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3rd Wildside MTB powered by SRAM - NE
Tasmania, Australia, January 31-February 3, 2004
One of Australia's highest profile mountain bike races, Wildside MTB, was officially launched in Deloraine, Tasmania on Tuesday by SBS sports presenter Michael Tomalaris, host of the Cycling Central television programme. "The event offers the true mountain biker a little bit of everything and from what I've seen so far, only the strongest and best riders survive," said Tomalaris.
Tomalaris added that mountain biking has reached a new audience around Australia and events like Wildside MTB go a long way in promoting this type of cycling discipline even further. "Wildside MTB was popular in 2003 and it looks to be even bigger this year," he added.
Wildside MTB 2004 will run from January 31 till February 3 and will include stages in Cradle Mountain, Que River, Stirling River, Montezuma Falls, Spray Tunnel, Granville Harbour and Hells Gates. The race has attracted a capacity field of 309 riders from Australian state and territory as well as riders from America and New Zealand. The event caters for open, veterans, masters and under 23 riders in both genders.
Dual (and defending) champion Sid Taberlay of Hobart heads the list of 134 men's open entrants, but he can expect tough opposition from three-time Australian champion Paul Rowney of NSW, 2002 World Junior Champion Trent Lowe of Victoria and the reigning Oceania Under 23 champion Shaun Lewis of Sydney.
Other high profile entrants that will compete in Wildside MTB include Victorian Alistair Farley, winner of the 2003 Oceania Under 19 Championship, Queenslander Lisa Mathison, winner of two world junior championships and is the reigning Australian champion for elite women and Sydney's Niki Gudex, winner of the 2003 National Series.
Year Men Women 2003 Sid Taberlay (Tas) Eleanor Patterson (Tas) 2002 Sid Taberlay (Tas) Mary Grigson (ACT) Past winners by Mario Stiehl, www.world-of-cycling.com