Media release: It’s all about head-to-head bike racing at Fife’s Eliminator

Crazy Crops2

EXHILARATING head-to-head bike racing is at the heart of the family focused Eliminator Mountain Bike Festival weekend, this year supported by EventScotland – part of VisitScotland’s Events Directorate, being staged at Parkhill Farm, Newburgh, Fife from Friday 31 August to Sunday 02 September 2018.

Kicking off the festival in style on Friday evening, The Cross Country Eliminator, recognised as Scotland’s only cross-country mountain bike eliminator tournament, has fast and furious racing from riders of all skill levels battling it out to avoid elimination. Four riders race side by side on a short, feature-packed cross-country course – approximately two to three minutes per lap. The first two riders to cross the finish line in each race will progress to the next round in a bid to reach the final and ultimate glory.

The now legendary and ‘whacky’ Eliminator Head2Head downhill race, the festival’s signature event, makes a welcome return on Sunday (with practice and qualifying on Saturday). Cross-country whippets and mountain bike enduro specialists are pitched against downhillers and weekend warriors in a series of seeded head to head downhill races on a super-fun dual downhill track with three challenging but smile inducing sections – ‘The Bear’, ‘The Fairmer’s Forest’ and ‘The Crazy Crops’. The first rider to cross the finishline moves into the next round.

Once it gets down to the last 16 riders things get a lot more exciting for both riders and spectators, with four-way Head2Head battles!

The Eliminator Head2Head downhill tournament is restricted to a maximum of 64 riders (in an elimination format), aged 12 years-old and up; with both male and female participants racing each other. However, 96 riders will get a chance to qualify through a series of timed runs on Saturday.

The riders who do not qualify for the Eliminator Head2Head or are eliminated from the early rounds will be automatically entered into the new Barley Dual Slalom (on Sunday). This is a thrilling first past the post dual racing elimination tournament through a field of fully-grown barley. This is a single elimination format so the first rider to cross the finish line progresses to the next round and the loser is eliminated from the tournament.

Looking ahead to next weekend’s event Aaron Gray, festival organiser at Muckmedden Events, said: “The Eliminator is very unique as a mountain bike event. It’s as exciting for the spectators as it is for the riders. It’s such a buzz watching the riders racing elbow-to-elbow through the event village. The compact venue also means you can go for a walk and be at some of the most exciting course sections and challenging features within just a few minutes.

“It’s also amazing for the riders, with that extra surge of adrenaline you get from lining up at the start line amongst a large crowd of cheering spectators, knowing if your opponent crosses the finish line first, you could be knocked out of the tournament.

“Since we developed The Eliminator into a family-friendly festival last year, it’s not just about mountain biking anymore. These days, it’s as much about the live music, food and drink and all the family-friendly activities off the bike as it is about the bike racing. We had many families attend last year’s festival who’d never been to a mountain bike event before and had a fantastic weekend, without riding a bike! I love that the festival doesn’t just cater to the muddy mountain bikers these days, but also their not-so-muddy friends and family!”

Paul Bush OBE, VisitScotland’s director for Events, said: “Scotland is the perfect stage for cycling events, and the Eliminator Mountain Bike Festival promises to be a fantastic action-packed weekend. The event truly has something for everyone, and the mix of mountain bike racing, live music, family-friendly activities and food and drink will no doubt attract a wide range of locals and visitors alike to Parkhill Farm.”

Parkhill Farm, a working farm, will once again be transformed into the magnificent venue for one of Scotland’s most fun-packed, family-friendly festivals, with an all-action activity programme for every age, both on and off the bike. As with its sister festival, Cream o’ the Croft, recently staged at Comrie Croft Trail Centre, The Eliminator is not only a festival of mountain bike racing for all ages, it is also a music festival with fun activities, camping and glamping; and a gourmet, locally-sourced food and drink festival, all crammed into one unbelievable entertainment weekend.

The attractions that will keep everyone entertained on Friday, Saturday and Sunday include a fantastic line up of live music (local Fife duo, The Coaltown Daisies, will headline on Saturday night), live DJ sets, climbing wall, pumptrack, yoga sessions, silent disco, Funky Mountain obstacle course, a round of the Scottish Bike Trial Championships, a farmers market, face-painting, mega water slide, karaoke, storytelling and craft and circus workshops.

All non-race activities are included in the price of a festival pass or race entry.

In celebration of Scotland’s Year of Young People 2018, Event organisers, Muckmedden Events, have scheduled a number of exciting opportunities to get local young people between eight and 26 from the Fife and Kinross communities involved at The Eliminator Mountain Bike Festival. The event organising team is looking to recruit more budding designers, engineers, musicians, singers, DJ’s and entrepreneurs to showcase their talents at the festival.

Organisers, Muckmedden Events, are promising the greatest edition of the event yet; and to celebrate they have produced a promotional video, filmed at the venue earlier in the year, which they have just been released –

For more information about The Eliminator Mountain Bike Festival and to purchase festival passes and race entries go to

Please note – Online entries for all the bike races close at midnight on Sunday 26 August. However there is still limited availability.


Media contact:

Paddy Cuthbert | Littlehouse Media | E: | M: +44 (0)7913 951717

Please contact Paddy Cuthbert if you would like to arrange to attend The Eliminator for an event feature.

For downloadable images for The Eliminator Mountain Bike Festival go to Please Credit Ian Potter.

Notes to editors:

The Eliminator Mountain Bike Festival will be staged at Parkhill Farm, Cupar Road, Newburgh, Fife, KY14 6HR from Friday 31 August to Sunday 02 September 2018.

The Eliminator Bike Events:

XC Eliminator

Friday 31 August – 5pm – 9pm approx

Open to age 12+

£20.00 Price also includes weekend entry to festival for the racer +1x member of pit crew (or partner/friend)

Scotland’s only XC Eliminator is a fast and furious cross-country race tournament where four riders race side by side on a short cross-country mountain bike course. Each race consists of a single lap of a feature-packed course – approximately two to three minutes per lap. There is a ‘blind draw’ on the Friday evening and riders will be chosen at random for the first races. There are no qualification rounds and the first two riders across the finish line in each race progress to the next round. Third and fourth placed riders in each race are eliminated from the tournament.

The Eliminator Head2Head

Saturday 01 September – 10.30am – 5.30pm (timed practice and qualifying from 12.30pm)

Sunday 02 September – 8.30am – 5pm approx. (race tournament)

Open to age 12+

£56.00 – Price also includes weekend entry to festival

The Eliminator Head2Head MTB Race is a downhill mountain bike race pitching riders across every genre of mountain biking, from ‘enduro heads’ to ‘weekend warriors’ and ‘downhillers’ in a series of head-to-head downhill races on a super-fun dual downhill track that features open hillside, woodland singletrack and a crazy dual slalom section cut into handlebar-high barley. Due to a very steep climb to get to the start line and the potential for a lot of race runs across the weekend, all riders are transported to the start line by tractor and trailer.

Race categories

The minimum age of entry to the Head2Head is 12 years-old. There are no gender or age categories and the tournament is restricted to a maximum of 64 riders due to the elimination format. Trophies will be awarded to fastest male and fastest female. Runners-up will receive medals.

The course

This is a super-fun, dual-downhill track which is suitable for all types of mountain bike from Hardtail to Downhill bike. The track consists of two separate lanes which merge together at some parts of the course. All large jumps/trail features are either avoidable, or roll-able to appeal to a variety of riding styles and skill levels.

Section 1 – ‘The Bear’. Lining up alongside your opponent on the start ramp you will be faced with the most spectacular views in Fife, which recently featured in Danny MacAskill’s ‘Wee Day Out’ video. This is a flat-out blast across open hillside featuring off-camber corners, berms, jumps and eye-watering straights, before dropping into a brand new technical section before the trees. Can you stay in front of your opponent all the way to Section 2?

Section 2 – ‘The Fairmer’s Forest’. The trail splits into two separate ribbons of singletrack and you re-calibrate your brain as it feels like you’re travelling at light-speed between the trees. It’s a laugh a minute in here, fun-packed singletrack full of roots, rocky sections and switchbacks. You can see your opponent out of the corner of your eye but you won’t know who’s in the lead until you reach the infamous ‘Heckler’s Gully’. Before you know it, you’ve exploded from the trees at full-pelt and through the heart of the event village. You stomp on the pedals as you race between a sea of excited spectators before boosting the (optional) road gap kicker into the Barley field. Seriously, this is the closest most people will get to racing at the Fort Bill World Cup. The atmosphere is ELECTRIC! On to Section 3…

Section 3 – ‘Crazy Crops’ This is what The Eliminator is all about, zig-zagging through a field of fully-grown barley in a mad dash to the finish-line! Never ridden on a bed of Barley before? You don’t know what you’re missing, it’s 2-wheel-drift-tastic! But who will cross the finish line first to progress to the next round?

Practice and qualifying (Saturday)

Riders can have unlimited timed runs while the track is open on Saturday (10.30am – 5.30pm approx.) Each rider’s fastest run counts as their qualifying run and the fastest 64 riders qualify for the Head2Head Elimination tournament on Sunday. Spaces are limited to just 96 riders, so most riders will qualify for the Head2Head tournament. Riders who do not make it into the top 64 automatically qualify for the Barley Dual Slalom tournament on Sunday.

Elimination Tournament (Sunday)

Riders are initially placed on the tournament table according to their qualifying time. Elimination rounds are not timed, and the winner of each race is determined by who crosses the finish line first. The first rider to cross the finish-line moves onto the ‘winner’s bracket’. Riders can swap lanes during Elimination rounds if they wish, provided they do not make contact with their opponent or force them to brake or swerve as a result. If a rider loses a race they move into the ‘loser’s bracket’ and can progress to the Grand Final by winning the remainder of their races. If a rider loses a second race however, they are eliminated from the tournament completely.

Once we’re down to the last 16 riders we up the stakes and progress to 4-way Head2Head battles! The rules stay the same but there are twice as many riders on track!

Barley Dual Slalom

(Race tournament for riders who either don’t qualify for the Head2Head Elimination Tournament, or are eliminated from the Head2Head in the early rounds)

Sunday 2nd September

Price (included with Head2Head entry)

This is a separate tournament from the Head2Head. Unlike the Head2Head, this is a single elimination format, so when a rider loses a race they are eliminated from the tournament without a second chance. This is a ‘blind draw’ and riders for the first rounds will be chosen at random, there are no qualification rounds.

The course

The track starts with a sprint through the event village before crossing the (optional) road gap kicker into the ‘Crazy Crops’ Barley Slalom. It is then simply a race to the bottom of the hill and the first rider to cross the finish line progresses to the next round. The second placed rider is eliminated.

The Muckathlon (a ‘run-bike-run’ off-Road Duathlon open to Solos and Pairs)

Saturday 01 September – 9.30am approx.

Open to age 18+

£20.00 (Solo) or £32.00 (Pair) Price also includes weekend entry to festival

Distance – 5km run (approx.) 20km Bike (approx.) 5km run (approx.)

The Muckathlon is a ‘run-bike-run’ Duathlon which takes place mostly off-road using the tracks and paths around Parkhill Farm and the Fife Coastal Path. There is one section of public road on the return leg of the cycle section. The competition is open to solos and pairs and runs as a relay format in the case of teams. A team of two will ordinarily consist of one runner and one cyclist. Due to the non-too-technical trails, the event is suitable for novice off-road cyclists with a good level of fitness (both on and off the bike).

The course

The race starts in the heart of the Eliminator Event Village with a 4.5km run around Parkhill Farm and along the banks of the River Tay past ruined fishing bothy’s and enjoying views across the Carse of Gowrie to the Tay Bridge. Once the run has been completed, participants will return to the Event Village to collect their bikes for the second leg, which consists of an off-road cycle along the Fife Coastal Path and around the base of Normans Law (the highest peak in North Fife) returning to the Event Village via a public tarmac road. The entire cycle is roughly 20km. The third and final leg of the race is a second 4.5km run around Parkhill Farm and along the banks of the River Tay.

The Mini-Muckathlon (a mini off-Road Duathlon)

Sunday 02 September – 11am approx.

Ages six – 13

£15.50 Price also includes weekend entry to festival

Leaving in age order with the eldest at the front of the pack, the race begins with a ‘Le Mans-style’ 100 metre sprint (the run) to collect bikes at the other end of the event village. The ‘Ride’ section consists of a 2.5km cross country cycle around Parkhill Farm and back to the event village. This section features double track and single track trails around the farm and includes The Eliminator’s famous ‘Crazy Crops’ barley slalom and returns to the event village. Suitable for bikes with 16”wheels or over.

The finishing order of riders determines final placings and the top three male and female riders within each category qualify for a podium position. Parents are welcome to chaperone children on the course if they wish.

Toddler Balance Bike and Pedal Bike Racing

Saturday 01 September – 10am – 4pm approx.

Free entry

A series of fun-focused pedal and balance bike races around a simple course within the event village. Suitable for all children under six.


EventScotland is working to make Scotland the perfect stage for events. By developing an exciting portfolio of sporting and cultural events EventScotland is helping to raise Scotland’s international profile and boost the economy by attracting more visitors. For further information about EventScotland, its funding programmes and latest event news visit Follow EventScotland on Twitter @EventScotNews.

EventScotland is a team within VisitScotland’s Events Directorate, the national tourism organisation which markets Scotland as a tourism destination across the world, gives support to the tourism industry and brings sustainable tourism growth to Scotland. For more information about VisitScotland see or for consumer information on Scotland as a visitor destination see

About Year of Young People 2018

In 2018, Scotland puts its young people in the spotlight, celebrating their talents, contributions and creating new opportunities for them to shine. The Year of Young People 2018 is a year-long programme of events and activities that will give young people in Scotland the opportunity to show the world what they are made of. Both Cream o’ the Croft and The Eliminator Mountain Bike Festivals are part of the YOYP18 Partner Programme and organisers are keen to create new opportunities for young people living in the local communities whilst showcasing their many talents on a national stage. For more information on Year of Young People 2018 and the event programme go to:

  • A global first, YoYP 2018 is a part of the Scottish Government’s themed-year programme which focuses on celebrating Scotland’s greatest assets.
  • A year-long programme of events and festivals are taking place across the whole of the country for all ages to enjoy, led by EventScotland part of VisitScotland’s Events Directorate. More information at
  • Local authorities, schools, youth groups and organisations are running their own YoYP 2018 activity. Search #YOYP2018 on Twitter for the latest news.
  • Young people co-designed the Year. A group of young leaders, Communic18, lead on all key decision making. More than 500 Ambassadors based across every local authority are championing activity.
  • The Year is delivered in partnership between the Scottish Government, VisitScotland and EventScotland – part of the VisitScotland Events Directorate, Young Scot, Scottish Youth Parliament, Children in Scotland, YouthLink Scotland and Creative Scotland.
  • More information can be found at, searching @YOYP2018 #YOYP2018 on Twitter or by emailing

The Eliminator MTB Weekender Sponsors and supporters


  • Black Isle Brewery


  • Fibrax
  • Comrie Croft Bikes
  • Ultimate Sports Engineering
  • Progression Bikes
  • MSC Tires


  • Frog Bikes
  • Sixth Element Wheels
  • Craigdon Mountain Sports
  • Highland Coffees
  • Agricar


  • Lindores Abbey Distillery
  • Bawbags
  • Horizon Watches
  • The Cycle Jersey
  • BQI Insurance
  • Wigwam Socks
  • SOLE
  • Shred XS

Supported by:

  • EventScotland
  • Year of Young People 2018
  • Fife Council

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