Muddy Hell cyclo-cross cancelled for lack of funding

Organisers Rollapaluza hope to be back bigger and better next year

by John Stevenson   September 27, 2013  

Knog Muddly Hell - Stephen Adams, Nick Craig, Chris Metcalfe, Phil Glowinski, Andy Waterman start seniors

Event organisers Rollapaluza have announced the cancellation of the Muddy Hell 2013 cyclo-cross, scheduled for Saturday, October 26.

In a statement on the Muddy Hell website, they say:

As the founders of the UK’s most exciting and atmospheric Cyclo-cross event, Rollapaluza strives to put on a bigger and better competition year-on-year. Entering its fifth year, we have been unable to assemble the required funding to provide the scale and exhilarating experience that the event’s fans and competitors have come to expect from us every Halloween.

Every year Muddy Hell is a feat of earth-moving and imagination. As a group dedicated to innovation in cycling events, we are not prepared to compromise on the high standards we set ourselves.

Rollapaluza is very proud of its role kick-starting a new wave of Cyclo-cross competition in the UK – big on spectacle and, most important, open-to-all. Muddy Hell has influenced other great events at race venues across the country.

We warmly thank our kind hosts, the Herne Hill Velodrome, and all our past sponsors – not least Knog, who literally and metaphorically lit up the Muddy Hell experience. We express our deep gratitude to past participants and spectators for their contribution to the success of previous events. The decision that we have reluctantly taken today is in no way connected to the host venue, our previous sponsors, nor the competitive field and the crowds they drew.

We would like to apologise to anyone disappointed by this news. We will seek to develop a winning funding model that will enable Rollapaluza to re-launch Muddy Hell as a bigger and better spectacle in 2014.

6 user comments

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Quote:
Every year Muddy Hell is a feat of earth-moving and imagination. As a group dedicated to innovation in cycling events, we are not prepared to compromise on the high standards we set ourselves.

Since when did CX have to have all that pointless rubbish attached to make it worthwhile? One of my local series have been bumping up the price over the last few years, and significantly this year, to 'ensure events are able to run smoothly' when they always have. Thankfully the other series isnt so pretentious and has kept entry costs at single figures despite using the same venues.

Its riding in the mud, i dont need a latte stand, belgian beer tent, commentary, 'trade sponsors' or any of that.

Quote:
Rollapaluza is very proud of its role kick-starting a new wave of Cyclo-cross competition in the UK – big on spectacle
and they have finally realised, we are not americans.

STATO's picture

posted by STATO [420 posts]
27th September 2013 - 11:57

7 Likes

CX doesn't necessarily *need* all this "pointless rubbish" at all, and normal cyclo-cross races will carry on regardless but Muddy Hell was/is more of a 'event' than just a race.

there was proper serious racing, yes, but there was also a lot of people having a lot of fun and people making an effort with fancy dress (some of whom were faster than those taking it seriously in skin-suits) not one bit of which is actually necessary at all, but it's probably the only cyclo-cross race where spectators outnumbered competitors by some degree so all the hard work done by the organisers must have done something right.

other cyclo-cross races have been cancelled in the past for various reasons, resulting in a bit of a 'ho-hum' shrug, the news that Muddy Hell has had to be cancelled this year has resulted in genuine disappointment from everyone that has ever competed, or wanted to.

here's to the event finding a sponsor for next year.

posted by VecchioJo [765 posts]
27th September 2013 - 12:52

5 Likes

Not having a good year are they? first the Urban Hillclimb now this

posted by stuartp [64 posts]
27th September 2013 - 14:54

6 Likes

Muddy Hell is a creative, exciting and fun *event*. Yes, there's racing but the event goes beyond that and interacts with the wider community and more importantly is accessible to ALL. It works well because there is a dedicated few with the energy and creative will to make something happen and that is very important. Oh, and did I mention that Muddy Hell is bloody good fun?

Yes, you can put on a shoe string cyclocross race and many do, week in and week out, and that is great but there's more to cycle racing than the few stalwarts who turn up every week to race around a windy, muddy field. To make it sustainable and accessible, to keep striving to the future you need events like Muddy Hell to draw people in, to encourage people to get involved, new venues, volunteers and spectators.

And for that reason I am very sorry that this event has been cancelled this year.

If you don't like it, don't go. If you think your local race is too expensive, then create a race yourself. Then come back here and complain what racing needs and what it doesn't.

I wonder if the London Olympics would have been the same if they just had some blokes with some spray paint and a starter gun, because that's all you really need for a running race, right?

posted by _BLIXA_ [1 posts]
27th September 2013 - 15:25

3 Likes

Maybe i was being a bit harsh, didnt mean all of that to be aimed directly at rolla but im just a bit sick of companies rolling up and putting on 'the next big thing' and expecting to turn a profit, when people up and down the country are giving up their own free time to set up, manage and run good events which benefit the community.

Yes some of the bigger events are good but cancelling it as you cant maintain 'high standards' sounds a bit like a financial justification not a quality one. Does herne hill charge that much to provide the venue? what other costs are there? If its a one-off event then surely people are going to still turn up based on its past quality?

STATO's picture

posted by STATO [420 posts]
27th September 2013 - 17:58

7 Likes

Very sad to hear this. Yes grassroots cyclocross racing is great, but Muddy Hell was the most fun CX event I've attended, as a participant and spectator, bar none. Hope they hook up with another headline sponsor in time for next year.

posted by Mr Agreeable [147 posts]
30th September 2013 - 18:51

6 Likes