Bentonville Bike Fest introduces Gravelicious, a new gravel race in the mountain bike capital of the world

Supported by Bell Helmets and Blackburn Design, Gravelicious will treat riders to a course on the famous Ozark gravel roads

(Image credit: Bentonville Bike Fest)

The Bentonville Bike Fest presented by Mobil1 returns for a third year this May with a new venue, UCI competitions and new events. 

A celebration of off-road cycling, the festival was founded by nine-time UCI World Trials Champion Kenny Belaey and features a trade show, competitions and activities for young and old.

The “Old Applegate” fairgrounds will now play host to the event, and by moving the date to Memorial weekend, May 25 through 28, Belaey hopes to attract attendees from throughout the country to the self-proclaimed mountain biking capital of the world, Bentonville, Arkansas.

Among the new competitions is the inaugural “Gravelicious” gravel race presented by Bell Helmets and Blackburn Design. This new gravel event will be held on a course designed by mountain bike legend Nat Ross, and riders will have the option of tackling a 30- or 60-mile route on the dirt roads of the Ozarks. The 30-mile event is meant to bring new riders into the sport and will also feature categories for junior riders aged 13 and older. 

Other festival favorites include:

-  UCI Trials C1 competition

- Enduro and Kids enduro races

- Kids events

- UCI C1 BMX flatland event

- Workshops by mountain bike pro's like Kyle Strait, Rachel Strait, Anneke Beerten and Carson Storch

Race registration opens March 15.

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Anne-Marije Rook
North American Editor

Cycling Weekly's North American Editor, Anne-Marije Rook is old school. She holds a degree in journalism and started out as a newspaper reporter — in print! She can even be seen bringing a pen and notepad to the press conference.

Originally from The Netherlands, she grew up a bike commuter and didn't find bike racing until her early twenties when living in Seattle, Washington. Strengthened by the many miles spent darting around Seattle's hilly streets on a steel single speed, Rook's progression in the sport was a quick one. As she competed at the elite level, her journalism career followed, and soon she became a full-time cycling journalist. She's now been a cycling journalist for 11 years.