Here comes the weekend!

The weekend holds plenty of racing for adults - but also the Glow Ride social event on Saturday. Most riders will have their eyes on the big day - which is Sunday.

The local club, Townsville Rockwheelers, have developed a testing course for the Marathon on Sunday and there is something for everyone. Under 15, 17 and 19 men and women race a half distance event, but Elite and Expert men and women, and Masters 1-10 Men and Women all race the same course.

There is a half marathon option for Open Men and Women - but this event doesn't have a Championship status. The National Championship is also part of the National XCM Series, as Round 3 of the Series. So it's worth attending if you have eyes on the overall point score within your category.

There's a change to the course for 2018. In 2017, riders started at the Quarantine Station, before heading out in an anti-clockwise direction, hitting singletrack soon after the climb past the WW2 pillbox.

But now, the course will run in a clockwise direction, heading along the Townsville Common first, which is a mix of doubletrack and wide walking paths above the marsh land - it's a better way to thin out the competitors before heading to Smedleys, and then tackling the rocky climb above the bays.

This will bring riders back along Under the Radar, with the Coral Sea on their left, creating a flowing descent down the rocky switchbacks, before passing along an open stretch and coming back to the Quarantine Station - where the lap will finish and there will be a feed and tech zone for food and water.

The Quarantine Station provides shade and parking, a perfect area for the start/finish.

The lap should be about 25km, with approximately 250m of climbing. 

What should you expect in Townsville?

A warm welcome! Townsville Rockwheelers are one of the biggest MTB clubs in Australia and cycling is definitely part of the community in this art of Queensland. Beyond that, it is likely to be warm. You probably don't need a jacket.

The trails are rocky, and the best way to think of Cape Pallarenda in terms of trail conditions is comparing it to Mt Stromlo - but more of the back trails than the front. It's a little flatter, but the trails flow in the same way, however some areas are pretty rocky.

Make sure you have a good think about how you will drink in the event. There's every chance it will be pretty warm, and one bottle per lap isn't likely to cut it. 

Jump across to the event webpage for full details and entry links - and see you there!