Marathon mountain bike through the Alps

Posted By: The Ski Channel on March 2, 2010 7:36 am


A new sports event whose true essence is the Dolomite mountain bike. Next June 26 the SELLARONDA HERO MTB MARATHON will be presented, the first edition of a mountain bike competition on two tracks (50 and 82 kilometres) in one of the Alps’ most fascinating settings, the Dolomites.

 It promises to be a tough but fascinating competition: the SELLARONDA HERO MTB-MARATHON, the mountain bike competition scheduled for June 26 in the most enchanting Alpine panorama. The race will wind through the Dolomites of Val Gardena, Alta Badia, Arabba, Val di Fassa and Alpe di Siusi. A competition with two levels of difficulty: a marathon route of 82 kilometres and one accessible to (almost) everyone of 50 kilometres.

A demanding competition where excellent training levels are required:  the 82 km route features a 4200 meter difference in altitude, an effort that will only be compensated by one of the most seductive landscapes in the entire Alpine range, the Dolomites, proclaimed UNESCO World Natural Heritage.

At the feet of the Sella and the Sassolungo, competing bikers will be keen to inaugurate a first edition race that is sure to become a must in the international mountain bike scenario.
Two routes, one long Irony and one Medium, which will cross the four Dolomite passes: Gardena, Campolongo, Pordoi and Sella, as well as the Duron Pass, around the magnificent Sella (3152 m) and Sassolungo massifs (3181 m). A unique natural spectacle that, with the typical Alpine refuges and the delicious typical gastronomic specialities, will certainly reward the MTB fans who cross the finish line. In particular, the two tracks include the IRONY route, 82 km and a 4200 meter difference in altitude, whereas the MEDIUM route, 50 km and a 2600 meter difference in altitude, was designed for those wishing to enjoy the spectacular panorama of the Dolomites. Both races will depart from Selva Gardena at 8:00 am on Saturday, June 26.

Both races will depart from Selva Gardena at 1563 metres, continue on to the Gardena/Dantercepies Pass (2298 m), which represents the first GPM. From here, the route descends toward Corvara (1568 m) and then rises in altitude at the Campolongo Pass (1875 m) and descends once more to Arabba (1605 m) in the Veneto region. The second GPM will take place on the Pordoi Pass (2239 m) and from here the bikers will descend toward Canazei (1450 m) in Val di Fassa, Trentino and Campitello (1414 m). For those who have chosen the MEDIUM route, the last ascent is toward the Sella Pass (2100 m). Bikers wanting to test themselves on the IRONY track must face the little known but demanding Duron Pass (2280 m) before crossing the finish line at Selva Gardena.

The SELLARONDA HERO MTB-MARATHON offers a wealth of associated events beginning Friday June 25 with a presentation of the event in the late afternoon followed by a Welcome Party. The sports weekend agenda will kick off the day after Saturday June 26 with the running event and its key centre at Selva Val Gardena. Winners will be awarded at 3:00 pm during the Pasta Party, open to all registered participants! Finally, Sunday June 27, an 8:30 am departure will launch the fifth edition of the SELLARONDA BIKE DAY on the road, a bike outing over the Alpine passes where cycling history was made on the road. For the occasion, the Dolomite passes Gardena, Campolongo, Pordoi and Sella will be closed to traffic from 8:30 am to 3:30 pm, leaving the road open to cyclists only.

From February 28, the official website of the event will be online where it will be possible to register directly. But remember: Registration to the first edition of the SELLARONDA HERO MTB-MARATHON is limited to 500 bikers. If you want to be a prime mover in this breakthrough event, you had better hurry!

Prize money for the first edition of the SELLARONDA HERO MTB-MARATHON is impressive: absolute winners in the MEN’s and LADIES’ categories will receive a check for 2500.00 Euros, whereas the winners of the amateur category will win a Scott mountain bike (GENIUS 20 for men and CONTESSA SPARK RC for women), whose retail value is approximately 4000 euros each.