Every year Mountain Mayhem fever starts with the frenzied springtime sprint to download entry forms at midnight, sign them and send them to larger than life organiser Pat Adams. But what makes the Giant T Mobile Mountain Mayhem 24hr race on 23-24th June the premier participation event on the MTB calendar?
Now in its tenth exponentially successful year, it's come through often Somme-like conditions, several big title sponsors and semi-urban motorway laced courses to move to the spiritual home of UK MTB festivals - Malvern - 3 years ago. The complete cross section character of the cast list never changes though. Nervous novices, sick in the head soloists, loonies with ironing boards or timed to the second, stressed to the edge Pro-Elite team looking to podium. All on the same course at the same time, all welcome and all vital to this unique event.
From the Le Mans running start, through the 3am suffering and stoicism, to the personal finish line handshake from event visionary Pat Adams - nowhere will you find the camaraderie and complex character of MTBing showcased better. The biggest bike demo selection anywhere, evening concerts, 28hr DJ sets - complete with glitter balls - in the middle of the woods, fireworks, massage tents, kids entertainment, astonishingly smooth yet sociable organisation, it all underlines it's inescapably magnetic appeal.
So roll up with the racers, the pit bitches, the corporate dignitaries and the families next weekend and find out yourself why this is one of the best MTB events in the world.