Storms & flash floods lead to yet another cancelled MTB event

The weather this year has been rather fickle, to say the least. A world away from last week’s 35 degree heatwave, heavy rain and flash flooding over the last day or so has led to the unfortunate cancellation of this weekend’s Ard Rock Enduro event, which was due to take place in Swaledale, North Yorkshire.

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Credit: Swaledale Mountain Rescue Team (via Facebook)

The organisers cancelled the event with immediate effect last night, revealing the site was at the time submerged after being hit by an unprecedented summer storm, which saw landslides, damage to roads and homes and a collapsed bridge. The BBC reported around 100 homes had been affected by the flooding, after a month’s worth of rain fell in just four hours.

In an announcement, organiser Joe Rafferty warned people not to travel in the area, and said although ‘heartbroken’, the team were working to recover as much as they could of the site:

“Please rest assured that none of our racers, participants or partners will be left out of pocket. If you are a catering or services vendor, or otherwise involved in the expo, we will be in touch very soon. Expect more updates as we go and bear with us if we can’t respond to messages as quickly as we would like to – you’ll understand we have a lot on our hands right now.

“Thank you for your understanding and continued support.”

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Dear friends, We are heartbroken to tell you that the 2019 Ard Rock enduro is cancelled. Flash flooding in the Swaledale valley has flooded roads, homes, land and submerged the Ard Rock site. Right now we are doing everything in our power to ensure our team on the ground is safe, and we can support all those who need help. The rainfall and situation is unprecedented in this area. Access to the area is blocked by emergency services from all roads. Please do not travel. Please allow us some time to ensure everyone is safe before we update you with all required details and FAQ’s. Rest assured that none of our racers, participants or partners will be out of pocket. If you are a catering/services vendor, or brand we will be in contact shortly. We will update you via video when we know everyone is safe. Thank you for your understanding. With heavy hearts, Joe and the whole team at Ard Rock.

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Around 147 brands were due to attend the weekend-long event along with a huge demo offering, and numerous catering and services vendors, racers and spectators.

Unfortunately, the Ard Rock isn’t the only event to be at the mercy of the UK’s recent changeable weather, with last month’s Malverns Classic also forced to cancel due to ceaseless rainfall.

After consulting with landowners, trade folk and safety crew, the decision was made to not go ahead with the event due to safety concerns.

The Malverns Classic plans to return for 2020 ‘better than ever’ with the event moved to 27-30 August, in the hope of better weather conditions.





Hayley Everett

Multimedia Reporter

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