Cannock Chase Winter Classic

1st March 2020, Cannock Chase, Staffordshire


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Cannock Chase Winter Classic 2020


Run And Ride Cannock Chase Winter Classic 2020

Fun And Friendly XC MTB Racing For All On

Cannock Chase

It’s hard to believe the Winter Classic has been going on for 7 years…. Our secret to success is to keep things simple. Great old school racing with a challenging but suitable for all course design. Categories that promote competitive racing regardless of ability and a relaxed fun atmosphere. Oh and no crazy entry prices!

Generally the start of the season for the XC Mountain Bike racers in the Midlands, turnout is always big for this event. Many categories will sell out before Christmas with riders super keen to kick off their year.

We made a number of changes to the category system for 2019 and we’re pleased to say they worked really well. That means that things remain unchanged for 2020 other than an increase to the lap numbers for the Youth boys (from 2 laps to 3laps) and the same for the E-Bike riders.


Held as before on the popular area of Cannock Chase the event will once again be focused more towards the newbie or fun rider. The Classic events have always been about grass routes of mountain biking. Riders from 3 years old to 70 years. People who ride everyday and those that have just started. Everybody with one thing in common and that’s a love for Mountain Biking.

The course is traditional mountain biking with everything from short and sharp climbs, single track descents and fire road blasts. We aim for a course which 100% ride-able therefore where we have a technical section we will also have an easy route for those who may be not quite so confident. We often get asked what standard you need to be to ride in our events. We would say that if you up to riding the red route around Cannock Chase then you are at a suitable level. If you aren’t quite at that level yet then you may find sections of our full course too difficult.

At the venue you’ll find camping facilities, fresh water, hard standing parking 100metres from the start and great view points for spectators. We’ll also have caterers and trade stands along.

The main adults course is based on a 3 mile lap on undulating terrain. We would estimate that lap times will be between 18 minutes for the fast riders and 30 minutes for the beginners.

Rouge’s Boy & Girls (10 Minutes)

Storm’s Boy & Girls (15 Minutes)

Sabre’s Boy & Girls (30 Minutes)

Youth Male & Female (M – 3 laps / F – 2 laps)

Beginners Male & Female (M – 2 laps / F – 1 laps)

Fun Male & Female (M – 3 laps / F – 2 laps)

Enthusiast Male & Female (M – 4 laps / F – 3 laps)

Pro / Expert Male & Female (M – 5 laps / F – 4 laps)

Single Speed Male & Female (M – 3laps / F – 2 Laps)

Fat Bike Male & Female (M – 3laps / F – 2 Laps)

Retro Bike Male & Female (M – 3laps / F – 2 Laps)

E-Bikes Male & Female (M – 3 Laps / F – 2 Laps)

What Category Do I Enter?

Our race categories are designed to encourage close competitive racing regardless of what position you finish in. The breakdown of categories is as follows. Please, please, please enter the correct category! There’s no glory in entering a race that you are clearly too good for or there’s no point in entering a race against people much quicker.

Beginners – Please before you enter this category ask yourself is this the right race for you. If you are fit and like and have any inclination to chase Strava times then this is not the right category for you. As the name suggests this is for beginners, new riders or those that just know they aren’t super fit but like to have a go

Fun – Next category up from beginners. This is the most popular category. It’s for those who may of raced before but want to just enjoy it and not really worry about how quick they are. You like to go fast but you don’t spend hours a week on the bike and don’t class yourself as “quick”

Enthusiast – For the guys who race a fair bit, spend al lot of time training and generally rip round. Ideal for any Vets, Sport and quick Junior riders. Not a category for Elite or Expert riders.

Pro / Expert – Top level racing for the quickest guys around. Ideal for Elite, Expert and the very best Junior riders.

Single speed / Fat Bike – once again we’re offering a category for Single-Speed and Fat Bike. Tyres on a Fat Bike must be 3″ plus

Retro Bike – The history of “Cannock Chase Classic” goes way back to the early 90’s when mountain biking was just starting in the UK. We thought it would be great to see some of those old bike racing once again. To qualify for the retro category the bike must be pre 1995. Prize for best in class – The best looking Retro Bike in the event!

Children’s Race – The kids races have proved to be a massive success at every race we do. We generally got lots of really enthusiastic kids wanting to race their bikes and it makes a great spectacle to watch. The one piece of feedback we get is how fast some of the kids are and how difficult it is for new riders to take part and feel like they are on the same level. We’ve also noticed that we’re getting really quick riders entering a couple of races as they look for a bigger challenge.

We’ve decided to test a new format for the Winter Classic. It’s based around children entering an event based on their ability rather than their age. New comers can race in a simple 10 minute event or those with speed and experience can step up and ride a longer more challenging race. You guys chose which suits…. All we ask is that you enter the suitable event based on ability rather than the one you think you (or they) can win.

Breakdown is as follows

Youth – 3 Boys and 2 Girls (Full laps of the adult course)

Sabres – 30 minute race based on a half lap of the main course. Will include a couple of technical sections and hill climbs.

Storms – 15 Minute race based on a shortened version of the main course. Will include a technical section or 2 but nothing dangerous

Rouges – 10 minute race based around the arena


The race will based over 3 laps of the main course. No age or ability categories. One single race for all. All e-bike’s must be restricted in line with UK regulations.

Time Table

09.30 – E-Bikes Male & Female

09.30 – Youth Male & Female

09.31 – Beginners Men

09.32 – Beginners Ladies

10.45 – Fun Men

10.46 – Fun Women

12.15 – Rouges

12.30 – Storms

13.00 – Sabres

13.45 – Elite / Expert Men / Enthusiast Men

13.46 – Single Speed / Fat Bike Men / Retro Bike Men

13.46 – Elite / Expert Female & Enthusiast Ladies

13.46 – Single Speed / Fat Bike Ladies / Retro Bike Men

We understand that friends and family may wish to come along and watch you suffer. Therefore we’ve done our best to keep the course as close to the start / finish arena as possible. You’ll find that riders will enter the arena at least 2 times per lap so the spectators will never get plenty of opportunities to encourage or heckle..

As for the course, expect a real mountain bike course. What do we mean by that? Well plenty of nice techy, but fast flowing single track. and some lung busting climbs mixed up with a few fire road sections. As with all our events we try to create a few new sections with the backing from the Forestry Commission ready for the event. If you are a newcomer don’t be put off by the “real mountain bike” talk. Our course are 100% ride able by all levels and we don’t put anything too dangerous in the course, plus anywhere that has a difficult section in will have a ‘chicken route’ alternative. The course will be around 5 / 6km in length and take an average of 20mins (Top riders) 30mins (first timers) to complete. The course will be similar to one used for last years Winter classic but with changes to make it different and interesting.

If you are nervous about the course then why not book a skills session with Chase Skills who will help you prepare for any technical aspects of the course.

Now you head out in the opposite direction where the course flattens out for a few miles. You’ll zig zag through some dense wooded areas before heading back into a valley. Now you’re faced with a long steady climb back up on the top of the ridge bringing you to the half way point.

Again the course flattens out before heading into another valley and an area called Brindley Heath. A really picturesque section of the course, you run along the valley with a stream and heathland to your right and wooded area to the right.

Now your heading back toward the arena at which you come to at the 10mile point. You can pick up encouragement from spectators before heading off on a final loop around the arena that includes more fun single track.

Please follow the signage from Penkridge Bank to the car park area. From there you will be directed to the start / finish arena. We recommend that you arrive at this area at least 30 minutes before the start of the event. There will be a secure bag storage area for you to leave clothing / keys etc. Spend some time and warm up before the start and make sure you wear suitable clothing for winter conditions. The start area can get quite windy so a windproof jacket and full length bottoms are recommended.
Tackeroo Camp Site
Penkridge Bank
Nr Rugeley
WS15 2UA

The venue at Tackeroo is ideal for holding events at. Easily accessible from the north or the south Tackeroo is around 15 minutes from the M6 motorway junctions at Cannock (South) or Stafford (North).

• Toilets

• Camping – FREE

• Parking – Free, there’s lots of hard standing parking at the venue

• Food & Drink – we’ve managed to secure ‘real’ coffee car vendor, Per-Cup, to attend the event. For the true coffee lovers they’ll be offering proper coffee. We’ll also be offering a wide selection of home baked cakes & savoury treats

• Onsite drink water – there are a number of taps around the parking area with fresh drinking water.

• Massage Therapy will be set up early Sunday morning offering pre-race treatment and post race treatments. The effects on the legs of a good massage cannot be under estimated.

• Run & Ride Store will be offering the essentials should you forget something and dare we say something breaks. Of course all will be at a reduce “special offer” rate

• We’ll have trade stands from some of the biggest cycle companies in the UK along showing off their new 2020 range

We will not be sending out race numbers prior to the event. Please arrive with enough time (we recommend at least 1hr before your event start) to sign on. Signing on will be open at 8.30 in the morning so to give any keen riders time to get sorted well before their start time. At signing on you’ll need to find your name against your correct category and sign your name. For any under 18’s we will need a parent or guardian to sign for you. By signing you are agreeing to follow the rules and regulations of the event (these will be posted on the rider notice board at signing on). You’ll be issued with your race number and cable ties. We’ll need to take a £1 deposit for each number which will be given back on return of the number.

Entry on the day will be available with a surcharge of £5.00 (£2.50 for the U8’s, U10’s and U13’s categories). Please ensure you allow for more time to enable you to complete a brief application form. It is advised where possible that you enter via the website, this will remain open until midnight Wednesday 26th Feb.

We will be happy to process any cancellations up until 2 weeks (17th Feb) before the event. You will also have the option to change details, move category or transfer entries to another rider or have a refund. All this can be done by logging into your Racespace account.

Transfer of entries will carry a surcharge of £1.00

Cancellations will carry a surcharge of £4.00

Sorry but no changes or refunds after this date.

– “Quite simply the best trail running event in the area. So much fun and I never even knew those trails even existed”

– “Fun, friendly and fierce. A 12km run to remember”

– “Love this event! challenging and fun terrain, the hills the trails and even a dip in the water – perfect to let your hair down and just run”

– “Flat, dry, short, easy run…. NOT”

– “Fantastic event, can’t wait until next year. Again! Again!”

– “Really enjoyed the run. Felt a bit apprehensive when we arrived as i thought it might not suit me as a slower runner but I will definitely be back and will be recommending it”

– “Expect to be tested, pushed to the limit but above all else expect to enjoy yourself”

• Helmets must be worn at all times whilst you are on course with your bike.

• Your bike must be in good working order and suitable for the terrain.

• Any areas on the bike that could cause damage to yourself or others during a crash must be covered. E.g. open ends of handle bars / bar ends.

• Suitable clothing must be worn for the conditions.

• Abusive or offensive behaviour towards the organizers or other competitors will not be tolerated. Please refrain from using any offensive language.

• Please remember that you will be in a public place and whilst we have the backing from the Forestry Commission to use the land we must still share it with other members of the public.

• Please be courteous towards other competitors when passing. If passing a back-marker please give them plenty of warning that you will pass on the left or right. You must then wait for a suitable moment. Remember everybody has the same right to be on the course as you. Anybody found to be barging past or endangering others will be disqualified.

On-line entry is available now using the section below. Entries will be taken on the day with a small surcharge (£5.00) (subject to availability).