They're coming at the sport from two different directions but the Mildenhall Cycle Rally and the Cheddar Challenge series of MTB events are steeped in enthusiast fervour. And where keenies congregate, so does the trade...

Details confirmed for Cheddar and Mildenhall


Mildenhall Cycling Club have just released advance details of their annual cycling extravaganza. The ever popular Mildenhall Cycling Rally will once again take place over the August bank-holiday weekend (Saturday 24th – Monday 26th August 2002) at the town’s Riverside Middle School.

"It will feature all the regular favourites but this year’s Rally will follow a slightly different format, due to the BCF National Hard-Track Championships, held at the Manchester velodrome, which start on the Bank-Holiday Monday (26/8/2002). The Rally’s programme of events will start as usual on the Saturday but as a result there will be no grass-track on the Monday" says Mark Burchett a member of the organising committee.

"Track organiser Max Pendleton has done very well to squeeze three days racing into just the Saturday and Sunday which will also include two BCF National Grass-Track Championship events. The Monday will be a day for all mountain bikers, with an MTB omnium taking place on the grass-track as well the Cyclo-Cross, which is open to conventional ‘cross machines as well. Other changes will see the Off-Road Challenge (part of the MTB Omnium) and the Children’s Duathlon this year take place on the Sunday." he confirmed.

"A new attraction at the Forest Heath District Council backed event, will be stunt display cyclist Jez Avery who will be performing on the Sunday afternoon, while in the evening will see a return for a Rally favourite – International singer and performer Pete Sayers." said Mark Burchett.

Other events include Children’s Sports, BSCA Children’s Skill Tests, Audax Rides, Touring Routes, Cycle Jumble, a Quiz Night and one of the largest Trade Shows in the UK. The Monday will once again be billed as a ‘family day’ with extra attractions laid on for the children.

The Rally will again offer campsite facilities for tents and caravans, which must be booked in advance. The organisers stress the importance of doing this early as last year the site reached capacity nearly two months before the event!

The Mildenhall Club is now finalising the programme of events in readiness for the Information Brochure, which will be available at Easter. To get your copy send a first or second class stamp to Vera Staines. 7 Jellicoe Place, Thetford, Norfolk. IP24 2JU.

The Information will also soon be available on the Rally’s own web-site at including the booking forms to print off for the evening entertainment, camping and the competitive events, or you can email your enquiries to


Cheddar gears up for best year yet!

Following on from a difficult year in 2001, plans are already afoot for a number of events at Broadway House in 2002. While the Cheddar Challenge was as popular as ever, Broadway House was hit by the foot & mouth outbreak like all other race organisers and several new events that had been planned had to be cancelled. This means that 2002 will see the first full season of events based at the famous venue.

Cheddar 2002 – 4th – 6th October

Firstly, major changes will be made to the official season’s finale – The Cheddar Challenge. Last years event remained strongly supported inspite of the general downturn in racing and what can only be described as an exodus from certain formats. However, Cheddar has never been an event to stand still or follow trends, preferring to lead and move forward. In 2002 The Cheddar Challenge will tune in more to its core supporters and focus more strongly on the extremely popular cross country and trail disciplines. The format will see a strong mix of substantial participant driven races, mixed with some dynamic spectator attractions and, of course, great entertainment.

Downhill Dropped

The major casualty will be downhill, which has become unviable in its present form. The costs involved in mounting the race, providing safe & effective transport, as well as safety issues are prohibitive and the continuing behaviourable problems of some riders mean that this format is no longer worth the resources, time and repair costs. While the overal number of entries in 2001 mirrored that of previous years, there was no surplus, signalling that the riders themselves are either turning towards dual or BSX or simply turning away from downhill itself. The organisers also feel that Cheddar has enjoyed some great downhill racing over recent years and it would be better to move on to new formats and enjoy good memories of previous races.

New Schedule

The new schedule is exciting and reflects the remaining strengths within mountain biking. Friday will feature practice sessions for all the weekend’s events as well as a brand new night race which will be the main focal point of the Friday evening. Saturday will again feature the increasingly popular team race, as well as the dual/quad & the Mini Cheddars kids races. Plans for Cheddar’s infamous Saturday nighter are being kept firmly under lock and key at this time and no information is being made available, except that it will be "large, fat & funky"! Sunday will see the European Singlespeed Championships taking a prime position in the cross country schedule, rather than its previous dark, damp & lonely slot at the end of the day and a full schedule of cross country racing will be provided. More information on Cheddar 2002 will follow.

New Events

Broadway House is delighted to announce a whole series of events in 2002 that will confirm the venue as being one of the core providers of quality racing and leisure throughout the year.

Enduro – 18th & 19th May

Finally (asuming livestock remain healthy!), the long awaited Cheddar Enduro goes ahead in 2002 on the weekend of the 18th & 19th May. This event had to be cancelled last year because of foot and mouth and the organisers are chomping at the bit (no pun intended) to deliver ‘that Cheddar feeling’ to the enduro stage. The course will include many favourite elements of the cross country race at ‘the Cheallenge’, together with substantial trails as yet unridden at an organised event in Cheddar. Normal enduro rules will apply and there will be refreshments & support facilities available. The enduro itself will take place on Saturday and there will be a host of leisure activities laid on for Sunday, such as a BBQ, access to the heated swimming pool and ‘cool down’ leisure rides, making this an exceptional weekend away. For more details or an entry form contact Broadway House on 01934 742610.

Six Days of Cycling – 13th – 20th July

Broadway House has recently been designated as a cycling centre by the CTC and to celebrate the potential Cheddar has for the two wheeled among us, Broadway House is promoting its own leisure festival – ‘Six Days of Cycling’. In true Cheesy Cheddar style anyone attending can, in fact, enjoy riding out from Broaday House for about eight or nine days, but that doesn’t roll off the tongue as well!! The simplicity of the festival is its strength. The core message is for cyclists, mountain bikers or anyone with a bike to come and spend a week at Broadway House, enjoying superb rides both on and off road, as well as the great facilities found at the holiday park. Discounted accommodation has been arranged, meaning that there will never be a better time to visit Cheddar for some recreational riding. Route maps will be available and recommended rides will be promoted in the information area. ‘Apres bike’, there will be plenty of activities and entertainments as well as support facilities. You will be able to enjoy a massage, to ease your muscles back to life, take advantage of a specially arranged ‘spares & repairs’ facilitiy exclisive to the festival, or enjoy a BBQ. There will also be opportunities to visit the attractions in Cheddar itself, such as the Cheddar Showcaves or the world famous Gorge. The festival runs from 13th – 20th July and is the ideal holiday for keen bikers of all ages. Families are particularly welcome and the whole area offers masses to do and see.

Gravity Weekender – 29th & 30th June

Finally, Broadway House are promoting a ‘Gravity Weekender’ that will feature a host of sports and activities that are either dependent on, or try to defy gravity. Activities will vary from Paragliding & ballooning to short course mountain biking & BMX and the emphasis will be firmly on participation or trying out these activities. More details will be released for this event shortly.

Tel: 01934 742610

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