VisitScotland has today (24 Feb) announced up to £29,000 in funding for two mountain biking events, taking place in the Scottish Borders this summer. The TweedLove Enduro World Series event and the British Mountain Bike Marathon Championships have secured investment from EventScotland, the events team at VisitScotland through its National Programme.
With two days of high octane racing featuring the world’s top trail riders, the Enduro World Series returns to the Tweedlove Bike Festival for the second year running on May 30-31. With 600 places in the main event selling out in an incredible 30 seconds, the event will see riders from all over the world compete in the beautiful surroundings of Innerleithen and Glentress. The event was the fastest-selling event in the entire series, a fact made more significant as it is also has the most competitors.
The event will receive up to £25,000 in funding through the National Programme which, will support strategic marketing and PR and enhancements to the spectator experience, including increased capacity at the start area and an enhanced expo village.
Returning to Selkirk for the third year in a row, the British Mountain Bike Marathon Championships will see top domestic riders race over a challenging 75km course for the coveted national champion’s jersey. The event on May 1 will also feature a number of amateur sportives across three distances, giving riders of all ages and abilities a taste of the action. Up to £4,000 has been awarded to increase marketing and PR activity for the event, with visitors expected from throughout the UK.
VisitScotland research shows that domestic visitors to Scotland, who take part in mountain biking or cycling, on average stay over two million nights and spend £109 million each year. The Scottish Borders is the perfect destination for mountain biking with a range of challenging trails running through some of the country’s most spectacular scenery.
In November last year, the VisitScotland Conference Bid Fund helped support the Scottish Mountain Biking Conference 2014 – International Edition. The event at Peebles Hydro generated an estimated £250,000 for the economy and was attended by more than 200 mountain biking experts.
VisitScotland Regional Director Paula McDonald said: “Mountain Biking is a critical part of the tourism offering in the Scottish Borders. The 7stanes trails in the South of Scotland generate £11m for the local economy and with world class facilities complemented by stunning scenery and warm hospitality it’s easy to see why we are attracting these internationally significant events.
“Our aim in funding these events is to drive both domestic and international tourism, with hoteliers, restaurants and other local businesses set to benefit from an influx competitors and spectators. Scotland has a reputation as the perfect stage for events, and our team at EventScotland will continue to build on that by attracting major international events to the country.”
Neil Dalgleish said, “The Tweed Valley really is amazing for mountain biking and undoubtedly has the UK’s best enduro trails. Hosting the EWS for a second year proves that we are now in the premier league of the world’s MTB destinations. The whole community is very proud that the event sold out so fast – it’s incredibly exciting and we can’t wait to welcome the world’s best riders!”
Paul McGreal of Durty Events, organisers of The British Mountain Bike Marathon Championships, said: “We’re really pleased to have been asked to organise The British Mountain Bike Marathon Championships alongside the Selkirk Mountain Bike Marathon again. The financial support from EventScotland will make an enormous difference to both events. Most importantly it allows us to grow this already popular event, both in terms of riders of national and open events as well as their supporters and the spectators. This will ensure the event’s long term future thereby further benefitting the local economy.”