The Australian Mountain Bike Series will take on a new look this summer, with two new formats to be introduced for the benefit of riders and spectators alike. The 2011-2012 season will be split into two, with the cross country riders vying for the "All Mountain Cup" and the downhillers contesting the "Gravity Cup".
Spectators across Australia will have the opportunity to witness the nation's best riders, with events to be staged in Perth, Canberra, Thredbo, Mount Buller, Adelaide and Newcastle.
Each round will feature an activity staged in the center of each host town to bring spectators closer to the action than ever before.
The new formats will allow for growth in both disciplines, by offering riders the chance to compete in additional events over the weekend.
The All Mountain Cup will include a number of additional elements over the course of each two-day event. Riders will compete in a stage-like environment, in which performance results will be tallied to determine the overall event winner.
In addition to the centrepiece Olympic cross country event, other formats such as the cross country eliminator (four cross for cross country), cross country time trial, cross country enduro (25km to 50km), super D and the return of the short track event will be scheduled over the weekend of competition.
In the Gravity Cup, all downhill classes will now have seeding races on the Saturday, followed by finals on the Sunday.
"Mountain Bike Australia has completely re-written the way the national level events are delivered," said Tony Scott, Executive Officer of MTBA.
"The new All Mountain Cup is going to be a spectacle of cross country mountain bike racing that will appeal to all levels of skill and experience and one that will involve both riding prowess and strategy in several different short duration activities.
"For the gravity riders we have expanded the seeding races to include all classes. This means two timed runs for all riders.
"All of these changes are geared towards providing better value to participants by giving them more time on the bike, more often."
Details for the Four Cross Cup will be announced shortly.
On-line registration for all rounds begins September 1.
2011-2012 Australian Mountain Bike Series
November 19-20: Perth - All Mountain Cup
December 10-11: Thredbo - Gravity Cup
January 21-22: Mount Buller - All Mountain Cup and Gravity Cup
February 4-5: Mount Stromlo, Canberra - Gravity Cup
February 11-12: Mount Stromlo, Canberra - All Mountain Cup
February 23-26: Adelaide - Australian Championships (all disciplines)
March 3-4: Newcastle - All Mountain Cup and Gravity Cup