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MESSAGE FROM THE PRESIDENT

It has been an exciting month for mountain biking - your Australian Championships at Bright, Oceania Championships in New Zealand and a round of your Marathon Series in Alice Springs. There was a big increase in numbers at nationals this year, particularly evident in the junior riders, men and women. This was a great reflection of the work that MTBA and our clubs have been doing in junior development camps and programs around the country.

There were great performances at Nationals, disappointment for some, but several of our juniors showed great character at Oceanias by reversing  those results. Oceanias also gave some riders the opportunity to race up a category and Scott Bowden showed great skills to record a third place in Elite Men, behind Anton Cooper and Dan McConnell to get visibility in the Elites for Olympic selection, while Bec Henderson made it a double Australian and Oceania Championship title in Elite Women. Matt Dinham, Zoe Cuthbert and Kian Lerch-MacKinnon also returned home wearing Oceania Champions jerseys.

Bright was our third, best and final year of the current allocation of Australian Championships, and our thanks go to the Alpine Cycling Club and the Alpine Shire for all their work. Next year we move to Nerang in Queensland where your Australian Championships will also serve as an important test event for the 2018 Commonwealth Games. For MTBA, Australian Championships are about more than competition. They present the opportunity for a relationship between mountain bikers, a club, promoters and a location. MTBA aims to award championships to areas which will receive a lasting mountain bike benefit long after the championships have concluded. Better trails, better facilities, better opportunities for us just all to enjoy mountain biking in that area - whether it is racing or not. Hosting any form of national event is hard work for a club, but it is rewarding and will deliver a long term benefit.

We have also seen in recent days, South African mountain biker and Olympic favourite Rourke Croeser receive a 4-year suspension for the use of performance enhancing drugs. MTBA’s policy on this has been in-place for years and our commitment to a clean sport remains unchanged. Education of our junior riders play an important part instilling in them the values which will keep our sport clean and safe for you and your family. Whether it is groups of young kids at club events on their first bikes, young riders in the mud at the recent RATS event in Brisbane, or the 46 Under 17 men who lined up on the start line at Bright - they all represent the future of mountain biking in this country. 

Russell Baker AM

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MESSAGE FROM THE CEO

 It's been a very busy start to the year in Australian mountain biking. There is simply so many events condensed into an already very busy period on the MTB calendar, which begs the question, is it time to fully review the calendar and timing of National events?

Many events on the Australian calendar are dictated by international or UCI event calendars to ensure riders can compete in World Cups without the constant need to return to Australia and to suit the Australian seasons. Pressure now comes from the wide variety of disciplines that fall under MTBA and the desire to accommodate all with both National Series and Australian Championship events, which place a high volume of activities in the November to April period based on dates of current existing events that are now part of some of these National activities. 

The Cairns World Cup is fast approaching and preparations are becoming very busy, MTBA still needs volunteers to help deliver this fantastic event on the Australian MTB scene for this year and we welcome your involvement. 

The MTBA Management Committee recently met and endorsed a number of new initiatives regarding MTBA membership. They are all aimed at improving participation in this wonderful sport and we will have more on that in coming weeks. 

For those members, interested in stats, MTBA membership for the current financial year continues to grow in excess of 13% with current female membership at 1926 and junior membership levels (under 18 years) at 2591. The highest growing area of membership for the current year is Recreation, which is currently growing at 49.6% How does your Club compare to the current national levels?

The MTBA Awards were recently announced and presented in Bright, Victoria. These awards are a wonderful way to highlight and recognise so many involved and their achievements and contributions in MTB throughout the country. Congratulations to all nominees and winners. 

Over the past couple of months there has been some comment around CX and MTBA and where it's all headed. Recently, MTBA met with some representatives from the CX discipline and subsequent to that meeting, there have been some other quite positive discussions. To develop the discipline to its full potential will take the support of all parties and to do that and there needs to be a recognition of the role, we all play, a level of appreciation, cooperation and compromise applied in a practical sense.

CX is a developing discipline in Australia and is yet to experience the success it does it Europe, and whether that is achievable is also an unknown. MTBA is committed to developing this discipline, but the discipline does face some challenges now, as do all sports in their initial growth, but working together will certainly provide it with the best opportunity. However, right now, there exists some concern for the 2016 CX National Series, with less than the required number of bids received from the recent EOI process and three bids for National Championships.

MTBA will continue to discuss potential options with the bidders as we try to work out the best solutions for 2016 as quickly as possible.

Have a great month out on the trails.

Shane Coppin 

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2016 AUSTRALIAN MTB CHAMPIONSHIPS 

It has been hailed as the best Australian Championships yet, with milestones and plenty of memories.

Tracey Hannah racked up her ninth Aussie crown in the Elite Womens Downhill while Troy Brosnan overcame one of the best fields assembled in the Elite Men's Downhill to claim his fourth title.

To read more on the 2016 Subaru Australian MTB Championships

 https://www.mtba.asn.au/news/

As part of the 2016 Subaru Australian Championships the MTBA Awards night was held with Elite Womens Trials World Champion Janine Jungfels taking out the Peoples Choice Award. 

Six time World 24hr Solo Champion Jason English the winner of the other big award MTB Rider of the Year.

For the full list of winners:

https://www.mtba.asn.au/event/national-champs/

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EVENT NEWS

Round 6 2015-16 Subaru National Series

After traipsing to Western Australia, Victoria, ACT and New South Wales, Queensland wrapped up the final round of the series in dry and dusty conditions.

It served as a final test for riders as the series champions were crowned at the Toowoomba track. 

To read more:  https://www.mtba.asn.au/news/

Round 2 National XCM Series - "Easter in the Alice"

Andy Blair and Imogen Smith prevailed in the raw and red conditions to win the Elite Men and Women's titles at the second round of the XCM Series in Alice Springs.

The Elite riders faced 90km of inhospitable territory and some native wildlife in their bid to claim valuable series points.

To read more: https://www.mtba.asn.au/news/

2016 XCM National Championships

Marathoners will be heading across to the Apple Isle in chase of National Championships glory in the marathon once again at Derby, Tasmania.

It's the second straight year these world class trails have hosted the event, and there's still plenty of time to enter.

For more: https://www.mtba.asn.au/event/xcm-national-champs/

Round 3 National XCM Series - "The Golden Triangle"

After slogging it out down south, riders will get their legs pumping again for the third round in the XCM Series at Bendigo.

It'll be a true test of who can back up after the gruelling National Championships only a fortnight earlier.

For more: http://www.mtbbendigo.com/ 

NSW Junior Series & Schools Cup

The first round of the inaugural NSW Junior Series and Schools Cup will be hosted by WSMTB at Yellowmundee on the 17th of April. The series represents a co-operative effort by NSW clubs to provide more racing for juniors and is suitable for beginners and riders who contest national level events.

For more http://www.wsmtb.com/nsw-junior-series/

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WORLD CUP CAIRNS NEWS

Want to have one of the best seats in the house at the 2016 World Cup in Cairns?Become a Course Marshal for either the downhill or cross-country events with positions still available.

For more: bit.ly/WC2016VolunteersEOI.
Those that have already sent their Expression of Interest you should have an email with a link to the Volunteer Roster.

 

Smithfield Regional Park is going to look a treat for the Cairns World Cup, with the layout allowing fans every opportunity to enjoy not just the racing but plenty of other activities without missing the racing.

There will be food and drink stalls, exhibitor stalls, live music and a children's play area all within viewing distance of the track. 

To get your tickets:

https://www.mtba.asn.au/mtbworldscairns/

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MEMBER BENEFITS

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EDUCATION/DEVELOPMENT

There are two more Level 0 Skills Coach Courses coming up in regional NSW and VIC.

Sat May 7th in Wagga Wagga - https://online.mtba.asn.au/ERegister.aspx?E=3032

Sat May 21st in Wangaratta - https://online.mtba.asn.au/ERegister.aspx?E=3033

To register your interest in attending a course:  

https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1tFqK01ZExf4angMDCBBLK6MRrcwebEzUMP0Sfxo6Jn8/viewform 

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MTBA REWARDS

One of the benefits of being a member of MTBA is access to exclusive member only discounts across a range of products and stores. 

At the time of joining MTBA an email containing details on how to activate your MTBA Rewards and access discounts is sent to you. In addition to exclusive monthly discounts regular discounts are available on items such as movie tickets, fuel and travel.  

If you require your login email to be sent to you again, please contact Infinite Rewards at: customerservice@infinitrewards.com.au

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Photo Credits: Jiri Cech Photography, Element Photography, Russell Baker