Several hundred mountain bikers from all over the world took up the daily Strava challenges and quite a few even mastered all seven. A great challenge between everyday working life, child care and creative route planning - and a small consolation for the cancelled BIKE Transalp 2020.
Through the Local Trails Edition, the Irish duoDarren Ryan and Ryan Clatworthy got a new perspective on their local bike area – for example in the Wicklow Mountains. “We have explored our local trails like never before in search of new trails.” Their goal was never to ride the same route twice in one day. “Our team spirit has grown, we've enjoyed laughing at each other while trying to find the extra distance to complete the daily challenges making sure we rode a new route every day! We have always wanted to race the Transalps and this has been a great intro to multi day stage racing!” One of the biggest challenges besides the sportive aspect awaited the Irishmen at the THIRSTY THURSDAY: It was quite difficult to find a Bitburger 0,0 % beer where they live.
Silke Pokrop from the German Ruhrgebiet (nine-time BIKE Transalp participant) saw the action not only sporty but also funny. She rode the TURBO TUESDAY with her husband on folding bikes - "as fast as possible, of course. My husband Lars couldn't resist riding in the slipstream of a racing cyclist. The guy was really irritated... We had a lot of fun."
A very special partner
Andrew Rankin from South Africa (Johannesburg) had a very special partner at his side during the first "stage" (riding at least 30 kilometres): “I completed it with my 9 year old son and hopefully future Bike Transalp partner! It was his biggest ride ever and despite a bit of moaning he loved it.”
Thomas Obst proved to be very persistent at the HILLS FOR FRIDAY challenge in the flat Hilversum (Netherlands). There was no time for long excursions, so the local 70-meter hill had to be climbed several times until the 600 meters of altitude were on the speedometer. His motto: "It’s a long way to the Top (if you wanna Rock 'n Roll) von AC/DC.”
Frederico Monge from Costa Rica got up early in the mornings to collect miles before he had to swap his cycling jersey for the office outfit. “It has been fun waking up early to complete the race day, and then heading fast to the office to complete your day job.” And: “It has not been the same, traveling half the world to race in paradise Europe, but the effort and the commitment towards achieving the finish line have been of great enjoyment. The dream of going to my first Trans Alp is intact.”
Looking forward to a great scenery and new friendships
While some people sweetened their anticipation for 2021 with the Local Edition, others got reminded of their past BIKE Transalp adventures. Sami Vuorikoski and Simo Schroderus from Finland reminisced about their BIKE Transalp 2019 participation, while they collected a total of 278 km and 3500 m on the trails around the city of Lahti – “and enjoyed every pedal stroke!”
To increase the Transalp feeling in the quite flat Göttingen (Germany),Sören Fischer attached an old start number from 2013 to his handlebars. The Local Edition revives "the memories of my first Transalp Challenge 2013 with the preparation and my private Transalp 2016", he explains. "After I had a serious cycling accident in 2015, it was open whether I can ever go back to cycling again. The more outstanding was the feeling to arrive at Lake Garda in 2016 by bike" - after 464.18 km and 12.110 m of ascent.
The Portuguese mountain biker Paula Pita still has the first BIKE Transalp experience ahead of her. She is looking forward to “a wonderful scenery, hard trails and a lot of friendship”. Meanwhile, “Local trails edition is a reminder that I have to keep training to be in a good shape to face the hardness of the Alps.”