Adam was in some good company last weekend, and lucky enough to take the GMX through some of Tasmania's spectacular terrain. 

My weekend in Tassie was a win! Here I was, feeling pretty lucky with an invite to come and ride Tassie thanks to local Launceston rider Scott Mattern (via Tourism Tas). The other rider on the invite list, was none other than the famous bike blogger, John Watson, aka John Prolly aka The Radavist. Our task was pretty simple, get from Launceston to the Central Highlands and back in a couple of days and share this “Credit Card touring” experience with you all.

John Watson aka John Prolly aka The Radavist

It was set to be a “big tyred” weekend, we all wanted it all - the rugged trails, the beautiful winding bitumen and everything in between.

Scott and I were on Curve Titanium GMXs with 29x2.2 tyres and John was on a 44Bikes steel off-road tourer with some oversized 27.5 x 2.8s built by New England, USA. All our chosen wheelsets were carbon.

 Our day 1 destination was the Thousand Lakes Lodge; Being 100kms+  from Launceston it was nothing too strenuous by normal Curve standards, but still plenty of gravel, vert, and silky roads to work over the legs and earn a good feed. Cycling Tasmania with Curve CyclingThe Leafy Fall climb to the plateau included some lovely tree lined roads and some steep gravel pinches, which was rewarded with stunning vistas, crystal clear lakes and the ancient geology that the Tasmanian highlands are known for.

An oasis in a barren landscape, our accommodation was was spot on. The Thousand Lake Lodge was a former Antarctic training centre, and was recently converted into a stunning lodge by racing car legend Marcos Ambrose. Lush couches, some bloody amazing local beers, wine, a nice feed and then a comfy bed to sleep in. Thousand Lakes Lodge

The ride back was just as nice, albeit with a rather adventurous downhill to finish off the day.Hydo Scheme Tasmania

This section of the Tassie Trail was pretty smashed, littered with huge rocks and washed out areas saw us walking much of it, when you could mount the bike it was pretty wild ride. There were plenty of ways down the hill, and Scott was a little worried about his chosen route - but we didn’t give a shit, in fact the whole thing just added to the smiles and adventure.

 

This weekend and the company I shared, sums up about what I love about cycling;

Hanging with John Watson was pretty damn cool. He may be “world famous”, and “living the dream”, through the sharing of his two-wheeled stories, but down to earth nature and his fame doesn’t come without awesome talent and hard bloody work. He is on a mission to promote cycling and has taken big risks in driving his opinion to support those who give back to the industry. Chapeau!

John Watson aka John Prolly aka The Radavist in Tasmania 

Scott on the other hand is not in the cycling industry, he is a full time scientist, a Dad, a proud Tasmanian, and an all-round good bloke who just dead set keen to share his home turf with the rest of us. He gambled his valued time to help create this ride to help get Tassie on the cycling map.

Scott Mattern Tasmania local hero

Then there is me, the guy representing Curve. I love sharing the good vibes that these rides bring and get a real buzz from hosting rides that put the “awe” in awesome. But, ultimately we risk it all to make sure our products are worthy of the race you doing, the ride you are about roll on, or the adventure you seek.

Adam Lana Curve Cycling 

So here we have three pretty different riders with more-or-less the same goals; to share and enrich others through this awesome pass time we call cycling.

There were plenty of other cyclists who helped make it awesome, so a huge thanks to Scott for organising it all. Thanks to John for the insight, Enduro Ben for being so chilled. Rob for the trails and Troy and Co from Sprung for the wrench. Thanks to Will from Van Dieman's Brewing, for the Pork, Lamb and Beer!

 

Tasmania Cycling

Sad news that Jesse Carlsson has pulled out Race to the Rock. After speaking to Jesse and from his facebook feed, this what we have ascertained;

After doing all the rocky difficult single track, and coming to the end of the Mawson trail, Jesse had a big stack on an unsuspecting smooth gravel downhill run. He was heading west into a setting sun and was briefly blinded by glare as he approached an unseen clay wash out full of ruts. The bad timing saw him come down very hard, heavily winding himself (and puncturing a hole in jersey in his chest), throwing his back out and also sustaining injuries to his wrists and ankle, plus some deep and dirty cuts and grazes.
 
He managed to remount and ride one handed in agony about 30kms to Parachilna where he stayed the night. He still wasn't sure of the extent of the injuries "in these races everything hurts anyway, so you don't really know how bad the injuries are".
After resting he awoke to a very swollen ankle and wrist, but headed out for another 60km ride on one arm, one leg and lots of rough gravel to Leigh Creek to see a doctor. The doc. cleaned him up but suspects a broken wrist (no x-ray machine in Leigh Creek), so with Jesse not being able to hold on to the bars, he has understandably decided to pull out.
Hard bloody yakka is what Jesse is made of, and even though he won't finish, Curve  and Jesse can proud of what Jesse has achieved for this race in such a short time. Luring riders from Australia and the world to take on this adventure with him. Plus the stunning coverage with Cycling Tips ensures that more people will attempt this crazy but amazing ride. Now he can also be proud to see Sarah Hammond, the only female entrant, who was sitting in fourth on day 3, has now taken the overall lead. 

What a race! Well done Jesse.

 

Race to the Rock starters group shot

They are off and riding... Starting from Victoria Square in Adelaide's city centre 20 brave riders have committed to packing their bikes for a 2300 km solo adventure into the great Australian outback. Ranging from early 20's to early 70's the age range is huge. It's a male dominated ride with Sarah Hammond being the only female.

I arrived at 5:15am September 3rd 2016 to the start point for what was to be my first experience in real life as to how an ultra endurance race event starts. Photographer Lana Adams emerges from the darkness, followed by participating rider Ty Domin. By 5:30am, 5-7 riders arrive. By 5:40am, another 10 or so appear. There is a mix of excitement, nervousness and curiosity. Everyone is checking everyone else's bike, meeting and greeting eager to get going. I try to meet all the riders as they arrive and take a pic of their bikes. Bikes are in no particular order, and not a complete gallery of every bike. (Apologies for not attaching riders names to each bike.)

At 5:45 Jesse and Sarah arrive and the starting group is quickly gathered for a obligatory group photo before commencing at 6am sharp.

Race to the Rock rider Ty Domin

Race to the Rock bikes

Race to the Rock bikes

Race to the Rock bikes

Race to the Rock bikes

Race to the Rock bikes

Race to the Rock bikes

Race to the Rock bikes

 Once the group shot is taken and 6am arrives, everyone gets moving. Having insight to Jesse's plan on day 1 (His whole race schedule for that matter.) I wanted to ride out to the outskirts of the city and into the hills to get an idea of the pace the leaders will settle into. RCC members join us as the meandering bike path turns into bitumen on Gorge Road, then takes a sharp climb of 10-15% into Batchelor Road where the group gets split up. Jesse, Justin and Gunther were nowhere to be seen. They accelerate once the tight bike path opened up and off they went.

Race to the Rock day 1

Race to the Rock day 1

Race to the Rock day 1

30kms from the start point, I wave goodbye to Sarah and the rest of the riders as they begin day 1 of their journey that is Race to the Rock.

Im happy to have shared the morning with the riders and wish all of them luck.

Ride Safe

Steve Varga

 

Sarah Hammond Trans Am 2016

With only a week until the 2016 Trans Am Bike Race kicks off, I thought it would be good opportunity to preview the 2016 event and focus, in particular, on the women's field. This year the women's Trans Am Race field is looking strong with some very tough riders lining up for the challenge. It could be a international battle between the U.S., Australia, Italy and the U.K. Read on to find out more about the riders to watch.

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The CURVE CXR Bike Packing

Designed as a CX race weapon, the Curve Cycling CXR is living life as a versatile adventure machine. Sure it's sweet spot is on the cross track but the CXR is being used for so much more.

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Alpine Meadow Blog Pic

Late in 2015 good friends of Curve, John Griffiths, Liam Crowley and Gareth Pellas attempted to ride from Canberra to Melbourne, mostly along the Bicentennial National Trail (BNT). It was an ambitious plan to cover around 1,000 km over an extended weekend through some tough terrain. We asked John to pen a few words to tell us about their adventure. Read on to check it out.

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You’re not really doing that alone are you?

That was the question I fielded most often during Christmas catch-ups pre-departure, and then in coffee shops and camp kitchens as I rode my way down down Tasmania’s east coast.

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Steve was married earlier this year and on the morning after, he went for a ride with the boys. Now for his honeymoon, he and his lovely wife Beattie jumped on their Grovels to bike tour 1800kms from Munich to Barcelona.

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Jesse considers himself more of an MTBer than a roadie, yet over the past few months he has done more road miles than most of us would do in a year or two.

Here is his "totally biased review" of our CC50s wheels...

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