Moors Valley is situated not far from Ringwood in Dorset and was the venue for the races the weekend of the 24th & 25 November 2012. I ran this course 2 years ago, scootered the course last year and so this year decided to bikejor the course so I’ve completed it in every way I could.
The start is at the top of the main car park down a long, flat, hard-packed track which runs really fast until you get to the left turn about 500 metres from the start chute and make your way deeper into the woods. The trails on this course are mainly fast, flat, forest tracks with occasional turns into the narrower, muddier and more technical sections through the trees.
This year was the wettest and muddiest I have ever seen it, making it hard going on the bike in places and even tougher (I imagine) for the scooters. The only place the course was easier than in previous years, was about 2/3rds of the way in, where you right turn to a long, deep sandy downhill section with a sharp left hand turn at the bottom. The persistent rain had packed down the sand, therefore it was much easier to negotiate the slope and Donnie and I ‘zoomed’ down the hill with only a hint of a wobble on both days.
The finish is at the bottom of the car park near the visitor centre (which has a ‘Go Ape’ course nearby too) and the trail runs alongside the golf course for the last few hundred metres, giving the opportunity for a slight downhill sprint finish to the end.
The Moors Valley course is an ideal one for beginners to have a go at a 5km race or for someone to have their first attempt at bikejor or scootering and is also a good one for getting a personal best time, due to the lack of hills and plenty of wide open tracks for overtaking.
We thoroughly enjoyed both days of racing, however I did learn by the second day I needed glasses for the bikejor due to the vast amount of water/mud that covered my face by the end of the first day!
Moors Valley is a course we won’t miss out on and for anyone just wanting to come along and watch there are plenty of other things to do, plus a fantastic cafe for post-race refreshments!