The 57th edition of Tyneside Vagabonds Mountain Time Trial in Northumberland sees a rematch between last year's top two riders - 2011 MTT winner and National 24 Hour record holder Andrew Wilkinson (Port Sunlight Wheelers) returns to defend his title against Rapha Condor Sharp professional Richard Handley who finished just 22 seconds behind in second. Also challenging for the top spot will be the Blumilk.com riders, former winner John Tuckett and man-in-form Jon Sturman who recently defeated Andrew Wilkinson in the Teesdale MTT.
Other former winners of the event riding this year are Martin Gibson (Adept Precision R.T.), and Ian Norris (Blumilk.com) who joins John Tuckett and Jon Sturman to lead the challenge for the team prize.
With a field of 82 riders this year, the race is once again one of the biggest events in the North East time trial calendar. Due to roadworks in Rothbury, the course has been amended to start and finish just outside the town, but retains the classic route over a shortened 45 mile course through the Northumberland hills. The racing in various age and ability categories will be hotly contested.
This year's event is held in memory of George Scougall, a former vice-president of the club, who sadly passed away just over a year ago. He kindly left £500 towards this year's event, and the club is honoured that his wife, Valerie Scougall, will present the prizes this year.
The Vags MTT is also the second round in a three race series called the Mountain Trophy - the first round being the Teesdale MTT and the final being the Derwentside MTT.
Sponsors for the event are:
Prize List, and thermo mug for each rider
First rider starts at 10:02, with Andrew Wilkinson last to start at 12:22.
The event starts and finishes at Rothbury, 35 miles north west of Newcastle upon Tyne. The course heads out to Elsdon via the timed hill climb over Billsmoor. The riders continue over Winter's Gibbet, and on to Belsay, before turning north for a hilly final leg back to Rothbury.