TransWales begins this weekend

Seven days of mountain bike stage racing on tap

The TransWales begins this weekend and will run from August 14-20. New for 2011 is an optional prologue on the the eve of the event on August 13.

The seven-day mountain bike stage race includes hundreds of riders from around the world and it takes them throughout the wilds of Wales over 536km (333 miles) with 15,260m (1,758,530 ft) of climbing.

It can be ridden solo or in pairs.

Split between marathon-style linking stages that test endurance together with intense special "rally-style" special stages - including a technical hill climb, downhill, night riding, and general trail riding special stages - the TransWales tests all-round fitness, speed and technical ability to find the strongest riders to be crowned its champions.

There are also two "mini" TransWales three and four day options in addition to the full fat seven day challenge.

The organisers have announced that this year's Trans Wales will be the last in the current format; however, it might return in a much altered form next year.

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