MAREEBA local Vince Marcel is currently competing in one of the most gruelling and iconic mountain bike stage races in the world, as today marks the fourth of eight consecutive days of riding that pushes the athletes to their ultimate limit as part of the Crocodile Trophy.
The annual race takes place in Tropical North Queensland and covers a total of 700 kilometres that incorporates a variety of trails such as rainforest, bushland and Outback tracks along with river crossings.
Marcel is competing in the Amateur Masters category, which pits the best amateur riders between 35-40 years of age against each other.
It’s Marcel’s first ever time competing in the Crocodile Trophy, and he noted the enormous amount of preparation that was required to get ready for the event.
“I have been training virtually every day for the past four months,” he said.
“Throughout that training I have incorporated both mountain bike and road riding which will hopefully hold me in good stead for the race.”
When Marcel spoke with The Express last Thursday (two days out from the event), he said while he wasn’t sure what to expect heading into the event, he knew it was going to be one that tested him both physically and mentally.
“I am both nervous and excited,” he said.
“I am definitely experiencing plenty of nerves as it is such a long race; however I couldn’t pass up this opportunity as it is something that has been on my bucket list.
“It’s a once in a lifetime opportunity and I have made sure that I have reached out to other riders so I can take their advice on-board and perform at my best.”
Marcel said he would like to thank those who played an integral role in his preparation for the race.
“Firstly I would like to recognise Giant Bicycle Centre Cairns for getting me ready, they have been crucial in the preparation of my equipment among other things,” he said.
“I also would like to thank my coach Peter Lister from Cadence Cycle Coaching for his efforts and the Mareeba Discount Drug Store for providing me with all of my nutrition needs.
“Lastly and most importantly I have to acknowledge my wife Tracy and two boys, competing in the Crocodile Trophy takes a lot of time, dedication and commitment and they have been by my side the whole way.”