Drover Cycles co-owner uses contacts to boost local cycle event

Industry gets behind second Hay Bike Fest

Hay-on-Wye held its inaugural Bike Fest last year and is gearing up to return bigger and better next month with a programme pitched at all disciplines of cycling.

The festival is run by volunteers, and supported by Hay Tourism group, which is chaired by Luke Skinner, co-owner of local bike shop Drover Cycles.

Exhibitors include Rockshox, Troy Lee, Royal clothing and bike design legend Patrick Morewood’s fresh MTB brand Pyga. Polaris and Santini bike wear and Urge helmets will also be among festival exhibitors, alongside demo bikes from Commencal, Neil Pryde, Saracen and Genesis. The festival hub is in the grounds of the Welsh border town’s historic castle, with space to meet fellow riders, browse the stalls and talk bikes, or refuel at one of the food stalls or bar.

Skinner said: "The country roads, moorland and mountain bridleways around Hay provide a rich variety of riding. We’ve been working hard over the last year to build on the success of the first event and we’re sure we’ve done the sport proud."

Kicking off the weekend on Friday 25th April is a dual slalom race for all-comers. Bikeability skills training sessions for children will be run on Saturday April 26th in Hay town centre, while off-roaders can take their pick of guided rides suited to everyone from beginners to experts thanks to the efforts of MTB guide Rob Eveleigh of wild-rides.co.uk. The High Above Hay sportive runs on Sunday April 27th and Sunday will also see British Mountain Bike Orienteering bring an event to Hay for the first time.

It will also host the Timbuktu Turbo Challenge, where sponsored cycling fans on four static bikes will aim to clock up between them a staggering 6,078km – the distance between Hay and its Malian twin town.

Skinner added: ‘We still need volunteers to take a turn in the Timbuktu Turbo saddles – there are 60 hours of pedalling time available. You could sign up for an hour-long stint or commit yourself to a nightshift – it’s up to you!"

Hay Bike Fest runs from Friday April 25 to Sunday April 27th. Head to www.haycycling.org for details on the rides.

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