Brecon’s annual mountain bike endurance event – the legendary Beast – is less than a fortnight away!
Every year, hundreds of riders line up for a mass start near the town’s leisure centre before embarking on a gruelling tour of the Brecon Beacons National Park.
The charity event benefits local causes like Brecon Mountain Rescue and the Keith Morris Memorial Fund.
As ever, be prepared to take on the leg-burning climb to the The Gap mountain pass below Fan Y Big.
Remember, if you need to hire a ride for the event, we have a massive hire fleet which includes the runner-up in MBR mag’s Hardtail of the Year test, the Saracen Mantra Pro. If big wheels are your thing, we have steel-framed High Latitude 29ers from Genesis.
Here’s five Beast-taming tips from Drover Cycles team rider Dave Price to help you get the most out of the ride.
1. Nutrition: Hydrate well and have an early, big breakfast so you have plenty of energy and a settled stomach before the start. Eat little and often throughout the race but stick with what you know – don’t choose the day of the event to try a new energy bar, it may upset your digestive system.
2. Your bike: Needs to be as race-ready as your body. Get it in top fettle before the day and consider taking it to your local bike shop for a last-minute service. The top of The Gap is the last place you want a mechanical. Go for a quick ride before the event to make sure everything is running smoothly. Check brake pad thickness – if it’s wet, the sandstone can soon finish them off.
3. Pacing: A quick start will help you get ahead of the masses before you settle into a steady pace and you’ll be able to maintain ride flow at bottleneck technical sections. You’ll be spending hours in the saddle, so remember there’s no shame in getting off to push on super-steep sections where walking will expend less energy than riding.
4. Gear: Check the weather forecast and wear suitable attire. The Beast covers challenging, mountainous terrain where you won’t have the back-up of a warm trail centre cafe. Consider kitting yourself out with a lightweight waterproof if there’s even a sniff of rain.
5. Above all: Enjoy the ride and have fun! The Beast is a charity event, not a race. Don’t ride aggressively and look out for your fellow riders.
Brecon Beast – Sunday 14th September, 9am start. Entry details here.