The world’s longest Ultra-Stage bicycle race, Red Bull Trans-Siberian Extreme 2015, has reached its finish. Ten international athletes cycled 9195 km for 23 days at an average speed of 30 km/h. The Russian team of Mikhail Ignatyev and Ivan Kovalev won the race in the duo category, while Belgium Kristof Allegaert was the quickest amongst solo riders.
Smothering heat, cold, strong head and tail winds, heavy showers, thunders, huge insects, night rides, 1000-km stages, various climate and time zones – that’s just half of the list of challenges the cyclists had to battle during those 23 days on the roads from Moscow to Vladivostok.
“If you compare my world tour and the Red Bull Trans-Siberian Extreme I’d say that the race is much tougher, “ said the only female athlete and a Guinness World Record holder for circling the globe by bike, Paola Gianotti. “You have to keep the pace, overcome the difficulties and manage without sleep. That’s a truly extreme challenge and I feel it in every inch of my body.”
“It was hard even for the local riders, – said the 2004 men’s track cycling points race gold medalist , Mikhail Ignatyev.” “it was an unusual format for me. Different stages, different physical conditions of the competitors and awful roads made this race a real challenge. I love my bike and it’s a part of me, but there were moments when a thought of getting back on the bike made me scream,” commented the Russian duo team winner.
41-year old Allegaert stormed to triumph in the solo category. “Frankly I’m surprised, – said the Belgian, – I thoroughly prepared for the race but didn’t expect to win. It was an exciting and challenging race. I’m sure there will be plenty of riders wanting to compete in the Red Bull Trans-Siberian Extreme next year”.
Russia is the largest country in the world, covering more than one-eighth of the Earth’s inhabited land area. During the race, the athletes passed 7 time zones, 4 climate zones and crossed the border from Europe to Asia.
Kristof Allegaert (BEL) 318:57:30
Eduard Fuchs (AUT) 331:52:13
Steve Harvey (UK) 337:35:49
Denis Madjara (RUS) 399:11:43
Mikhail Ignatyev/Ivan Kovalev (RUS) 282:16:23
Thomas John/Johannes Rosenberger (DEU) 283:41:51
Paola Gianotti/Paolo Aste (ITA) 286:6:46
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The Red Bull Trans-Siberian Extreme is 9195km long. It takes approximately 9h to travel this distance by plane, 120h by train and 7-9 days by car. Spanning across Europe and Asia and passes through seven timezones and four different climates, the route follow the the longest railway line in the world: the Trans-Siberian Railway. It connects Moscow with the Russian Far East and the Sea of Japan. It has connected Moscow with Vladivostok since 1916.
Four solo riders: Steve Harvey (UK), Eduard Fuchs (AUT), Kristof Allegaert (BEL), Denis Madjara (RUS) and 3 duo teams Paola Gianotti and Paolo Aste (ITA), Thomas John and Johannes Rosenberger (DEU) and Ivan Kovalev and Mikhail Ignatyev (RUS) will be on the roads of Russia for 23 days, to take the human powers to the next level and compete in a challenge of a lifetime.
These nine men and one woman are on target to accomplish this in 23 days on one of the most mesmerizing routes in the world.
[Source: Red Bull’s newsroom July 2]
Some additional resources for info on the race:
• Here is a Google Doc with an update from this past Monday.
• A great post Nigel Wynn did on Cycling Weekly is here.
I’ve had the honor of working with the kind & brilliant team at Vulpine several times in the past few years and always meant to contribute something meaningful to their blog.
…life is fast paced for almost everyone and you can’t lead out, all the time.
Well, today we published a story about being forced off the back in races and how it has become an allegory that has influenced my life off the bike as well. By this I mean, life is fast paced for almost everyone and you can’t lead out, all the time. For me personally, the past almost two years have been the most frenetic, fast paced and chaotic yet. I’ve been dropped a few times but I’m still in it to win it!
Read more about The Importance of Getting Dropped here.
I’m dusting off this old blog soon & for starters I’m getting a weekly newsletter going. I’ll be sending weekly cycling industry & #startup scene updates + #sales & business development insights + general assorted radness!
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[Draft Edition Published to Meet the Deadline – Editing still in Progress]
Covering ground instinctively implies progress quantified by distance.
Way back in the day, 1997 to be exact, the first CD I ever bought was Cake “Fashion Nugget”. Of course, Going the Distance is what the Festive 500 is all about. (Yes, I know about the Chuck Ragan song too ; ))
But to me, besides metaphors being fun, I’ve found that December really has become a pivotal time where I’ve found myself either at the starting line, staring down the challenge or already in the throes of covering new ground. These kilometers accumulated at year end symbolize momentum built up for a new beginning.
So in a number of ways, this annual cycling endeavor challenges me differently each year. Each time the terrain has been different. Like other challenges, I achieve it despite the obstacles. For the Festive 500 this has meant new friends in new circumstances in new cities each year.
In 2011, I was intentionally between jobs about to take a leap of faith to see if the shoe fit at Highgroove Studios, a year later, I was a month into being a Big Nerd and in 2013 I was three months into expat life working hard to help make Big Nerd Ranch big in Europe!.
Cool story bro, what about bikes?
Well, for my inaugural Festive 500 accomplishment: group rides, sunshine and no steep inclines. Then barren frozen solitude was theme in New Jersey, New York & Pennsylvania. Last year was hard: brutal frigid temps, nearly no wheels to suck for the entire 500km save one day of camaraderie. And the home stretch was mired in sketchy black ice patches, snow drifts and early AM hours in the dark. Whoa. Luckily, 2013 wasn’t as cold nor lonely by far and may have been my best yet!
Like 2012, the 2013 write-up will be ‘condensed‘ to a single entry. Enjoy!
Day 1 | 12/24/13 | 22.3km
— Rapha (@rapha) December 23, 2013
A albeit less than epic but certainly scenic start to this year’s effort began with a simple and standard leg of my daily commute to Amsterdam Noord.
Some grocery shopping on the way home.
And one final schlep out to tally up a meager 22.3km
Day 2 | 12/25/13 | 47.3km
Christmas Day is hardly ideal for a bike ride and considering it was our first as a family in Europe. I knew I was pushing the limit. But, unsure of how much time I’d have throughout the week, I was keen to captures some kilometers.
I set a random target and headed south. At one point I was rolling under the tarmac at Schiphol.
Snuck in a fun ride picking up Chinese takeout!
Day 3 | 12/26/13 | 211km
Same strategy as the previous day. Start early and tally up some distance. I knew Marc had a ride planned but wasn’t sure how much of it I’d do.
By the time we met, I had knocked out 60km. And turns out I’d been for my first trip to Den Haag.
I even managed a quick write up that day and recently got some additional 35mm outtakes back from the lab:
Cheers to William of Unpaved.cc for the amazing route!
Day 4 | 12/27/13 | 26km
A ‘rest day’ of tooling around Amsterdam with the kids started with a #Bakfiets500 cameo on the on the Rapha Instagram. ; )
Day 5 | 12/28/13 | 12.8km
Very chill day comprised solely of our weekly grocery shopping adventure to the Nieuwmarkt organic market.
Day 6 | 12/29/13 | 271.1km
Longest day in the saddle yet! I’ll be spending time this weekend finishing this post by sharing this amazing ride’s story here but I haven’t been able to pen the post completely yet!
Day 7 | 12/30/13 | 32.5km
Spent the day exploring in and around Amsterdamse Bos with Otto and Mira!
Day 8 | 12/31/13 | 62.2km
— Rapha (@rapha) December 31, 2013
Last Day! Another adventure but this time to the beach and back on the Bakfiets!
Conclusion and finished story will be up by the 19th! Grand total? 681km!