With the growing popularity of Enduro racing and shorter endurance events (such as the Whaka 100 and Huka XL), the biggest loser seems to be 24 hour racing. The World 24 Hour Championship scheduled to be held in Canmore, BC this September has succumbed to a lack of entries and has been cancelled.
24 Hours of Adrenaline founder Stuart Dorland said the race had attracted its best Pro field for years, but a lack of amateur entrants and inadequate sponsorship heralded the death knell for the event, at least for this year. Read the official blurb here.
What do you think? Is the 24 dead? What type of racing is the future for mountain biking?
Always a shame to see an event bite the dust, but times change I suppose. I reckon the likes of Enduro events and off-road epics (Brevets etc) are going to be strong in the future (well, Enduro/Super-D already is). Events suited to the majority of riders, where fun is the name of the game – Enduro is great, as it doesn’t involve a) lycra, 8kg bikes, or shaved legs, and b) massive jumps/risk, and moto gear – almost “anything goes”, splitting the chasm between XC and DH, where most riders reside.
I also think Brevet-style events will be big in the future, as riders seek adventure outside of their “regulars” – the proliferation of dedicated MTB parks is great, but after a while the same old tracks lose their sheen and excitement, and the urge for adventure returns. There’s nothing quite like heading out into the unknown for a few hours (or a few days) with just the gear in your bag I reckon – kinda what I imagine MTBing used to be like, back in The Day.