2019 will be the ninth Alpine to be conducted out of Lakes Entrance. Our first East Gippsland Alpine was in 2003, after we moved out of our previous Bright base due to problems with the landlord.
Since 2003 we have run lots of stages – some good and some not so good. And some held up well in the wet years, whilst others failed the weather test. We’ve now got a pretty good handle on what works and what doesn’t.
It took me about a millisecond of deep thought to accept Owen’s invitation to be part of the 2019 Alpine road team. Since then, Steve Hollowood, Frank Grant, Owen and myself have surveyed and selected around 350 km of great stages for your competing pleasure.
Owen’s selection criteria was very simple – just find the best. Stages needed to use the best and smoothest roads we could find. At the same time, they needed to be weather proof – even if we did have our “once in a 100 years” weather event last time.
The 2019 Alpine route contains many roads we’ve used in the past, although they’re put together a little differently. Also, we’re really excited to be using a couple of fabulous roads we’ve never used before. From our perspective the whole event has an excellent flow and feel to it.
All roads meet Owen’s criteria and the road team is really excited about what’s planned. The only rider is getting through winter without major dramas and hopefully, the weather gods smile on the event!
The downside to using the best roads is that the stages will be quick. But, we have blended in enough tight, twisty stages to even this out.
Friday will be longer than in the past, with 4 Stages totalling around 40 km, with the day ending at a Bairnsdale Speedway spectacular on Friday evening.
Saturday is an awesome day, visiting Orbost and Cann River as we have in recent events. We’ll have 9 stages, the longest 59 km and the shortest is 12 km. The average stage length on Saturday is around 25 km.
Sunday is around Bruthen and comprises 5 stages, totalling 130 km with an average 26 km length.
It’s going to be lots of fun…