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Watagans hosts gritty new cycling event

Watagans hosts gritty new cycling event

Bicycle Network’s Gravel Grit, the newest event on Australia’s cycling calendar, is coming to the Watagans National Parks on the New South Wales Central Coast next month. 

Up to 300 cyclists from Sydney and interstate will discover the sensational gravel riding within the Watagans on Sunday 10 September. The event, run in partnership with Cyclist Magazine, combines road cycling and mountain biking with four separate ride options of varying distance, climbing and surface.

Bicycle Network’s General Manager of Events, Rebecca Lane, said the event is an exciting opportunity for road cyclists to experience the beauty of going off-road in a gravel mecca right on Sydney’s doorstep.

“Gravel Grit is an event for the adventurous cyclist who wants to take their weekend rides up a level. With the crunch of gravel under their tyres and the beauty of the Watagans around them, Gravel Grit is a uniquely raw experience. Add to that the challenge of the various surfaces, and it’s a sensational day on the bike,” said Ms Lane.

“The Watagans National Park is made for adventure with its ever-shifting landscapes and maze of tracks and trails. It feels like true wilderness, but is easily accessible from both Newcastle and Sydney.”

The varying ride options at Gravel Grit, which include sections of bitumen, fire trails and 4WD tracks, cater for all types of riders, whether they’re a seasoned road cyclist or a mountain biker. 

Ride options range from 46 kilometres on smooth roads, to 67 kilometres on rough tracks with more than 1,000 metres of climbing. All routes are connected and start and finish at the same spot in Cooranbong.

“You can choose your own adventure at Gravel Grit and decide on your final route once you get out there. If you’re feeling good and like the look of the 67 kilometre track, then you can take it and know that you’ll have Bicycle Network’s high-quality support behind you,” added Ms Lane.

Food, drinks and coffee will all be available at the event site, as well as super stops on the route to keep riders hydrated. A bike wash station will help riders clean their wheels before heading home.

Some changes to traffic conditions will be made along the route, including speed limit reductions on Freemans Drive, Martinsville Road, Martinsville Hill Road, Deaves Road and Mandalong Road.

“While most of the event route is within the Watagans, some changes to traffic conditions will be made in the area to minimise risks to all road users. We thank locals for their patience and cooperation,” said Ms Lane.

To enter and for more information about the route plus tips and tricks to tackle the ride, visit

Media contact: Alexander Miller, Media Adviser – Bicycle Network P: 03 8376 8824 M: 0425 858 428 E:

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About Bicycle Network’s Gravel Grit

When: Sunday 10 September 2017

Where: Watagans National Park, New South Wales Central Coast. The event site, including start and finish line, will be at Cooranbong Park, Cooranbong.

Riders can take four separate route options with varying distances, climbing and surfaces.

The Taster: 46 kilometres and 868 metres of climbing
The Low Road: 55 kilometres and 1,009 metres of climbing
The High Road: 59 kilometres and 1,096 metres of climbing
All Roads Lead Home: 67 kilometres and 1,210 metres of climbing

Please see the attached document or for full route details and changed traffic conditions.

Who: 300 road cyclists, mountain bikers and adventure seekers from the local region, Sydney and interstate. 

Why: Gravel Grit is a back-to-basics event that embodies the heart and soul of bike riding – independence, exploration and discovery. 

The crisp sound of tyres crunching over gravel, the feeling of mud splashing your legs and the smell of dust, trees and sweat in the air will bring riders back to earth.

It is a unique event that offers something different and an escape from the hustle and bustle of inner-city and suburban roads.

Entries are now open from $85. 

For entry and full event information visit

About Bicycle Network

  • Bicycle Network is a health promotion charity combating physical inactivity – two of three Australians don’t get enough physical activity and the best way to address this is through bike riding
  • Represents 50,000 bike riding members across Australia
  • Campaigns to build more places to ride and make bike riding safer for all Australians
  • Conducts national behaviour change programs including Ride2School and Ride2Work
  • Runs world class events including Around the Bay, RACV Great Vic, Newcrest Orange Challenge and Peaks Challenge Series as well as Gravel Grit
  • For more information visit Follow Bicycle Network on Twitter at @Bicycle_Network, Facebook at /BicycleNetwork and Instagram at @Bicycle_Network

Gravel Grit – changes to traffic conditions 
Sunday 10 September

The below changes to traffic conditions will be made in the area around the Watagans National Park on Sunday 10 September for Bicycle Network’s Gravel Grit.

While most of the event route is within the Watagans, some changes to traffic conditions will be made in the area to minimise risks to all road users. Bicycle Network thanks locals for their patience and cooperation.

Speed reductions – 9:00am to 5:00pm Sunday 10 September

Speed reductions will be made on Freemans Drive, Martinsville Road, Martinsville Hill Road, Deaves Road and Mandalong Road from 9:00am to 5:00pm on Sunday 10 September.

Stop/go point – 9:00am to 9:30am Sunday 10 September

A stop go point will be place for westbound traffic on Freemans Drive between Martinsville Road and Alton Road from 9:00am to 9:30am on Sunday 10 September.

For full information about Gravel Grit and the event route, please visit