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Leisure, fitness, a driving competitive
force -- there's motivation a-plenty to
take part in Capital Punishment on May
29. Not the least of which is the chance
to see parts of the ACT you wouldn't
other wise be able to.
Adventure Racing Outdoor Challenges
(AROC) postponed last year's inaugural
event to negotiate approvals from the
various landholders and now, having
cleared the way, it appears the wait was
e challenge has already attracted
competitors from all over the nation,
including mountain biking legend
Michael Milton, and it presents a rare
opportunity for participants outside the
competitive arena. e carefully thought-
out network of Canberra's best mountain
bike areas results in a fantastic tour for
both locals looking to fill the gaps in their
Canberra experience and visitors who
want an inside-look into some of the most
beautiful and exclusive scenery on offer.
AROC course designer and managing
director Tom Landon-Smith said that
plotting the perfect course comes with its
"What we have tried to achieve with
this event is a grand tour of all the best
mountain bike single track areas of
Canberra," he said.
"Of course safety is a priority so the
course is then amended to remove any
inherently dangerous sections of track and
to limit road crossings and road travel.
"We have to then find out if we can
gain access to all the land required -- some
being private, some public."
As participants plummet through the
course at speeds reaching 60km an hour,
the thrill of the ride is only belied by the
beauty of the surrounds. e trail will lead
riders through parts of the crisp Kowen
Forest and reveal the breath-taking view
from the top of Mount Stromlo. ey will
feast their eyes on the Majura Vineyard and
will traverse the International Arboretum.
According to AROC managing
director Alina McMaster, with the
full spectrum of terrain all seamlessly
connected, the nation's capital is the ideal
place to hold a mountain-biking event.
" e single tracks in Canberra are some
of the best in Australia," she said.
" e beauty is that there are a number
of different mountain bike areas with
"Sparrow Hill for example is quite flat
with a great network of smooth twisting
single tracks and great berms while
Stromlo Forest Park has more technical
tracks and steeper sections, both up and
"Capital Punishment links them
altogether so you get the whole range."
Tom added, " e nature reserves and
parks of the ACT are so well managed
whereby they are protected from
developments, but remain accessible to
self-propelled forms of recreation."
Tom said introducing challenges is not
a concern as the natural terrain takes care
"Most people would not believe this
but I always try to make my courses as
easy as possible but still with as good
riding as possible," he said.
With only a small amount of climbing,
the course has been designed to be easily
accessible for all kinds of people. Tom said
while any 100km race can be gruelling,
Think you've seen all of Canberra's natural vistas?
The inaugural Capital Punishment mountain biking event
will make you think again. By DIONE VAN-HEER
DOWNHILL DAREDEVIL: Netti MTB Enduro 'Angry Doctor' event,
run by AROC Sport. Image supplied by Krystle Wright.
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