Muru Cycles is proud to be a sponsor of The Simpson Desert Bike Challenge.
The race, which has been run each year since 1987, is a not-for-profit event
which supports the Royal Flying Doctor Service.
The event offers many unique challenges to both riders and support crews – physical, mental and logistical. The start point is Purni Bore, on the western edge of the Simpson Desert and about 70 km further in from the popular campsite at Dalhousie Hot Springs. The race consists of ten timed stages over five days and covers around 570 km. The morning stage of around 80 km gets underway at 6am with the afternoon stage of around 50 km starting at 2pm.
The event has a minimum speed requirement (total elapsed time). Riders must maintain an average of 12 kph to stay ahead of the pursuing sweep vehicle. If caught by the sweep, riders are transported by vehicle to the end of that stage and receive a time penalty. Riders can then restart the next stage as normal. Riders must be self sufficient during each stage as no support vehicles are permitted on the track while the race is in progress.
The SDBC (for short) is a very personal event to us. Wayne has ridden the event three times and will ride it again in the future as well. We've served on the event committee and laid out the course as course markers durring the actual race.
In recent years the dunes have become softer and regular mountainbikes have been replaced with FATbikes. As you might imagine, the FAT tyres are perfectly suited for riding on the soft sand of the dunes and the swales.
Muru takes that one step further with our use of titanium for our frames, forks and handlebars. The material has a natural compliance, an ability to absorb small vibrations and impacts that can take the edge of the long days in the saddle.
A few inspirational words from Wayne about the event.
if you make the decision to ride the SDBC, it *will* be one of the absolute hardest things you have done in your life.
No ifs... no buts... no maybes.
You will have moments where you hate your bike, your shoes, your helmet, the sand, the track, the course, the sweep, your support crew, the other riders and me; for talking you into this madness...
I have been so tired at the end of a stage that I curled up on the sand in the foetal position beside someone's car and would have cried... had I not been so tired and sore..
I have been so wrecked that I was too tired to eat. That night my wife made me goldern syrup sandwiches and fed them to me to get my energy levels back enough to actually eat other food.
I have dehydrated so much that my eyesight in one eye went blurred. Dr Mal refused to let me finish the stage. (with only 17klm to go)
I have been so royally stuffed after a stage, that even in 34 degree temperatures... I was shivering uncontrollably due to muscle fatigue and exhaustion..
I have ridden 8 stages (2010) in TWO pairs of bib-knicks on top of each other, because my rear end was so sore that it took me 1/2 an hour every morning to get seated on the saddle.
But...I have made friends that I will never forget.
I have ridden over a dune at 6am heading due
east towards the sunrise and been in absolute
I have ridden flat out around the edge of a salt
lake looking over my shoulder at the sweep
convoy and managed to beat them to the finish
of the stage.
I have chased a feral camel down the track.
And I have surprised and amazed myself and
others with what I'm really able to do.
Make no mistake... it *will* hurt. It will hurt like
nothing you've ever done before. You mind will
crack and you'll swear that you will never come
And you'll come back.
And you'll inspire others to enter.