Otway Odyssey presented by Focus

  • Australia (AUS)
  • Off-Road Cycling

An Odyssey in the Forrest this Weekend

Press Release / 19.02.2019See All Event Posts Follow Event
Riding the Otway Odyssey
Riding the Otway Odyssey / © Matt Hull

Rapid Ascent is excited to present the 13th edition of the Otway Odyssey and Great Otway Gravel Grind this weekend. Presented by FOCUS, the off-road biking mecca is without doubt one of the most iconic MTB festivals in Australia. All the action will again take place in pristine landscape surrounding Forrest in the Great Otway National Park.

The 13th edition features three marquee events: the 100km Odyssey, the 50km Shorty and the 30km Rookie.  All races start and finish at the Forrest Football Ground amidst a spirited bike expo and food festival. The Gravel Grind races and kids 10km Pioneer format will be held on Sunday.

Competitors range from the recreational to the elite with some riders making the journey from as far as Darwin and Peth.  Some of the big names include Jay Vine, Tasman Nankervis, Brendan Johnston (Men’s) and Peta Mullens, Holly Harris and Samara Sheppard (Women’s).

The weather forecast is looking hot and dusty with respective tops of 24 and 29 on Saturday and Sunday. “A little rain during the week would make for a slick track but it’s looking unlikely at this point,” says John Jacoby, race director. “First-aid kits will be a must have!”

All courses of the Odyssey and Gravel Grind events take advantage of an intricate network of single track and unsealed roads surrounding Forrest. They’re known as some of the most diverse and free flowing trails in the country—especially the Red Carpet section.

Locals are encouraged to cheer on the riders if they see them. And awareness of course-markings on roads and trails and short road closures is important. Rapid Ascent would like to thank Otway locals for sharing and maintaining the trails for 2019 participants.

An the electrifying race atmosphere for both competitors and spectators, a Grommets Ride on Sunday, infused with all the beauty of Great Otway National Park—walks, waterfalls, lighthouses and local produce—make it an event weekend fit for families and the elite. Adding to this is an exclusive ‘ladies-only’ champagne event on Friday night. Ladies can come along and learn all about MTB in a friendly and informal setting.

Entries to the 2019 Otway Odyssey are still available online at www.OtwayOdyssey.com.au until 3pm Thursday. Entries are then available on Friday evening and Saturday morning at the Event Expo—Forrest Football Oval.

In addition to the 1,400 competitors, several thousand spectators are expected to descend on Forrest for the event.

“It’s still my favourite event, in my favourite setting, at the best time of year and I’d highly recommend it to anyone who loves adventure and awesome trails, and the shorter varieties to anybody staring out.” Says Peta Mullens, X5 Otway Odyssey Women’s Champion.

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