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Mildenhall’s annual cycling festival is to be scaled down

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Mildenhall Cycling Club have announced a major change to their annual cycling event.

The traditional three-day festival will be much smaller this year, with a selection of events taking place on the Saturday and Sunday of the August Bank Holiday weekend.

Explaining the rationale behind the decision to cut back, chairman of the organisers, Mark Burchett, said: “Ultimately we have been the victims of our own success.

Mildenhall Cycling Festival...PICTURE: Mecha Morton. (8133586)
Mildenhall Cycling Festival...PICTURE: Mecha Morton. (8133586)

“Over the 30 years of the event the majority of the organising committee has remained largely unchanged and with none of us getting any younger, there are not any willing volunteers to take over.

“We have therefore had to take the very hard decision to make this radical change.”

Reflecting the change, the event will be known as the Mildenhall Mini-Cycling Fest, although it will still be located in nearby West Row.

Headlining the two days of grass-track racing will be Sunday’s Ladies National 800m Championship.

It is expected that the meeting will still attract some of the country’s top riders, given Mildenhall’s long-standing reputation for grass-track racing, as well as staging rounds of the National Endurance and Sprint Leagues and Juvenile racing on the Saturday.

For the touring cyclist, CTC (Cyclists Touring Club) Suffolk will be offering 57, 100, 160, 200 & 300km timed touring rides on the Saturday, under the auspices of the Audax organisation.

Meanwhile, after last year’s successful trialling, the organisers will promote the Come and Try It On/Off Road Time Trial.

This will allow competitors on the Saturday morning to pit their wits against the clock over a mixed 23km course of byways, tarmac and Fenland Droves.

Burchett added: “It has been testament to the hard work and professionalism of the committed organising committee that an individual cycling club was ever able to promote an event of that magnitude which has become synonymous with cycling.”

Further details of the Mini-Fest will be available on the event’s website: www.mildenhallfestival.bike