Clearly, if I am going to do this ride, I will need an appropriate ride to do it on. It is a mountain bike race but if you discount the hike-a-bike sections of snow damage in the north and the few short bits of actual single track, the reality is that the course consists of mainly dirt roads.
Devouring everything that I can read with regard to the Divide over the last 4-5 years, I have decided to run a gravel road style bike and not a traditional mountain bike. That way I can benefit from the slightly more efficient pedalling dynamics and a more variable cockpit setup as I don't have a need for outright single track prowess. Everything is a trade off but I feel this bike will be a great compromise. Plus, it is an Aussie owned company that gets it's titanium frames made in China to it's exacting specifications.
My frame recently landed "in country" and I got to have a look at it today.(I didn't actually hold it as I haven't paid for it yet!)
She is a Muru B.N.T.
The BNT stands for Bicentennial National Trail which is an off road horse/rider/walking trail that extends the length of our Australian Great Dividing Range. Sort of like the Great Divide MTB Route, but with a hairier chest and much less elevation.
As well as making a dashing frame stand, Troy (above) will be building it up with woodchipper bars, a rigid carbon fork and a dynamo hub to power lights, mobile phones and cameras. In fact I have gone for a proven set up as Troy has a very well sorted Salsa Fargo, a bike the BNT is sort of trying to copy and he is very kindly going to recreate the Fargo's build on my Muru.
I will have more on the build as the parts come in. For now though it is time to look into a training plan to optimise my saddle time around work. I also need to give some thought to penning a Letter Of Intent (or a Letter Of Insanity as one rider put it) that needs to be shot off to the ride organisers.