On June 29, cyclists will take to the streets of Melbourne for an event like no other. There are no prizes for the fastest rider, and nor is there a set course. Instead the awards are for cutest couple, furthest traveled, and best costume; riders can tackle as many sectors of the course as they like, in any order.
Back for its ninth year, the Melburn Roobaix allows riders to see the city in a unique way. Although the course and starting location are kept secret up until the event, each year the finish line is at the Brunswick Velodrome. Inspired by the infamous Paris-Roubaix, the ‘Hell of the Northcote’ takes riders through the cobbled laneways of Melbourne's inner-north.
Event organiser Andy White, who is also known as FYXO told BikeRadar, “It’s really just about experiencing Melbourne in a different way. Life can get pretty serious these days, and I think it’s important to take a deep breath and not ride at heart rate or threshold, and to remember all the things you may have forgotten from when would ride bikes as a kid.”
Starting in its first year with just 100 people, the Melburn Roobaix now attracts more than 2000 riders, some traveling from as far as the the United States and Europe to participate in the event.
“The bike riding is kind of secondary to the calamity I suppose. It’s just people remembering that it’s as much fun to ride a bike and be silly, as it is to to train for and ride a 250km event - like the 3 Peaks Challenge.”
Plenty of prizes are up for grabs, including a custom bike built by FYXO himself, to an airfare to watch the real Hell of the North race in Paris.
Early bird registration for the event will take place on April 5, at Coffee Supreme in Abbotsford from 9am - 12pm and online registration opens on April 11. Registration costs $60 and the event will be capped at 2,200 riders.
For more information visit www.melburnroobaix.com