Course Descriptions

EVENT PROGRAM: The event program for the Redback MTB Stage Race is essential reading for all event attendees and covers details like event schedule, course descriptions, maps, rules and more. READ IT HERE.

>> New courses for 2022 <<

(which we finally get to unveil thanks to COVID event cancellations in 2020 and 2021!)

Things are happening in Alice Springs with (even) more new trail being built and (even) more riding alternatives – so we’ve changed a number of stages compared to previous years to make the most of the new trails and provide something new for the peloton of riders who join us year after year.

The trails around Alice Springs include plenty of variety – long, fast, straight-aways ridden at maximum speed to technical switch back climbs that will test your skills. There’s rocky outcrops leading to twisting berm runs, and undulating trails that will have you smiling (and sweating) from ear to ear. The 2022 Redback stages capture all this and plenty more…

The vast majority of trails are not signposted day to day – but we clearly mark them for our races – so they only come alive on race day when the Redback rolls into town, so book your holidays and get ready for a dream MTB holiday in the Red Centre.

Read more about the Alice Springs riding here.

Quick Links to Stages

Enter all 6 stages or pick and chose the stages you want to do great for riders with less experience, husbands / wives of riders and locals who still need to go to work on Thursday and Friday.



Stage 1: Westside XC race 36km

When: Thursday 18th August, starts at 9:00am
Distance: 36km – NEW for 2022 – not been used yet!
Approx riding time: 1hr55min for winners

Start Line: Scout Hall on Larapinta Dve (near Cnr of Lovegrove Dve)

Finish Line: Old Telegraph Station
Terrain and riding style: A varied ride starting on sandy tracks and then long continuous sections of flowing single track which will be sure to get your legs working for the days to come.

Stage 1 Course Map and Elevation Profile HERE on

The 2022 Redback starts on the west side of town at the Scout Hall on Larapinta Dve where plenty of work has been done to reshape old trails and carve out new ones – making it the perfect introduction to red centre riding.

The new course will take in The Hell Line in a clockwise direction (rebuilt since earlier years!), Road Train, Humpy, Nturrerte, and a heap of other trails before finishing at the Old Telegraph Station.

With almost ‘too much single track’ stage 1 sets the scene for a great weekend of riding to come. 

Just remember that this is the first Stage, so your body will be getting used to the riding and terrain… you may feel a little sore, but we promise you that in the following Stages your body will embrace the trails and hard yakka, and you’ll be smiling from ear to ear! 

Stage 2 – Anzac Hill Climb:

When: Thursday 18th August, staggered starts from 4:30pm 
Distance: 300m
Course record: Ben Mather 42 sec and Jodie Willet 58 sec.
Location: up the Anzac Hill scenic road in the centre of town!
Terrain and riding style: A pedal to the metal hill climb up a sealed road to a scenic look out at the top.

Course Map and Elevation Profile HERE on

Stage 2 is an individual time trial hill sprint up the ANZAC Hill scenic look out in the middle of town. Its only 300m from start to finish but when its lined with spectators shouting and screaming their encouragement, and glory of a mountain top finish at the top – this is an all-out blast against the clock to see who can smash it out the fastest.

Despite being short and sharp, this is a popular and very social stage as everyone watches each other sprint up the hill. Concluding at sunset the summit provides some great views over the local area and is great for families and spectators as well. 

A pop-up bar will be in action at the summit to add to the enthusiasm and entertainment of this social stage.

Stage 3 – Eastside XC Race 46km:

When: Friday 19th August, starts at 9:00am
Distance: 47km
Start / finish location: Cnr Tuncks Rd and Barrett Dve / Old Telegraph Station.
Terrain and riding style: A sweet course starting out on 4WD tracks but soon becoming an almost continual trail of single track through some of the region’s best trails.

Course Map and Elevation Profile HERE on

One of the highlight stages of The Redback. Stage 3 takes in some of Alice’s best and most popular single track like a greatest hits sound track that you just want to put on repeat.

Diving deep into the Eastside trail network this course includes many highlight trails like Stimsons (my favourite), Helmet, Perente, Carl’s, Sink Track Eagle and many many more. Formally conducted as ‘Stage 5’ in earlier years, we’ve made a few tweaks and added a few kms so you can truly live life large.

Finishing at the beautiful Old Telegraph Station with it’s extensive grass and ghost gum shady environment next to the Todd River and this is about as good as riding gets.

Stage 4 – Individual Time Trial 22km

When: Saturday 20th August. Starts from 9:00am
Distance: 22km
Start / finish location: Juicy Rump/Lasserters Hotel.
Terrain and riding style: An individual time trial. The stage heads east along a part flow / part technical track that keeps you on your toes and then heads for home on a fast flying trail across the plains. Superfun.

Course Map and Elevation Profile HERE on
This course may change and go further East towards Emily Gap – watch this space.

Stage 4 is another individual time trial – this time along the flowing trails in the Sunset Hill area south east of town. The 22km course follows some of the fastest sections of single track in the Red Centre with plenty of fast straight-aways and high speed corners to keep you on the rivet the whole way.

Riders are set off at 30sec intervals in reverse order according to the overall standings after stage 3 so all you have to do is hold off your followers and try and catch the rabbits in front!

Stage 5 – Night Race 22km

When: Saturday 20th August, starts at 6:45pm.
Distance: 22km.
Start / finish location: Alice Springs Golf Club.
Note the Golf Club bar and restaurant will be open to serve food and drinks before, during and after racing and will be a great place for a beer and a meal after the race!!
Terrain and riding style: Night race with all riders setting off as a mass start at night using their own lights. Same course as stage 4.

Course Map (Stage 4 & 5) and Elevation Profile HERE on

Stage 5 is held shortly after sunset and is one of the (many) highlights from the Redback as it is conducted as a night race through the outback.

Starting to the pumping tunes of Thunderstruck shortly after sunset, all riders set off together with your own headlights lighting the way for an incredible night race under the star filled desert night sky.

COURSE MAP: The course is the exact same as the stage 4 individual time trial raced in the morning(apart from slight course change for the first and last 2km) so riders are familiar with the terrain and can be wowed by the experience of racing at night together. This is an absolute blast.

Stage 6 – 49km cross country:

When: Sunday 21st August, stage starts at 9:00am.
Start/Finish Location: Schwarz Cres on west side of river. Finish at Lasseters Hotel
Distance: Approx 49km
Approx. riding time: 2hrs 15min+ for the winner
NOTE: the overall male winner of Stage 6 will win the Tavis Johannsen Memorial Trophy that has been struck in his memory.
Terrain and riding style: A varied ride with flowing sections of single track and 4WD tracks.

Course Map & Elevation Profile HERE or on

Saving the best to last, stage 6 is commonly the race favourite as it takes in ‘the best of the best’ trails around Alice Springs to finish in a real high note – with a few extra kms of trail added for 2022.

The locals continue to turn out more and more quality single track with recent productions being simply masterful, all of which are included in this final stage to make it the jewel of the Redback crown.

So tune up your bike, fill up your water bottle and then get ready to empty the tank on some of the sweetest trails for a final race blitz of pure fun. Enjoy.

“The final stage of The Redback was held across arguably one of the most amazing courses in all of Australia. A big call, I know, but I’m making it ??.” James Downing