Belgium to Istanbul
One Stage…No Route…No Support
One stage – The clock never stops. Racers choose where, when and if at all to rest.
No Support – Racers can only use what they take with them, or what they can find en-route at commercially available services.
No Route – Only mandatory controls ensure that racers visit some of the most famous pieces of road in Europe and connect with the suffering of their forebears. The rest is up to them.
One to Watch
Ashley Sharp is 38, and from Heptonstall and he was lucky enough to be accepted onto the 2015 Transcontinental Race. Training has been tough, riding in all weathers since November last year, and detailed and essential route planning for the race has been a challenge.
“It will be no coincidence that the most prepared will be the most successful. For those who rely on luck alone; Transcontinental Number 3 will raise the stakes. Many will fail.” http://reportage.transcontinental.cc/
But Which Way?
There is no set route as such – each rider is free to choose the most appropriate course between the checkpoints. At midnight on the 24th July the epic ride begins, with the tough cobbled Belgium roads and an ascent of the Muur van Geraardsbergen in Belgium. Checkpoint 1 is the summit of Mont Ventoux in France.
The next Checkpoint is in Sestriere at the start of the Strada della’Assietta – an Italian gravel road over the Alps reaching heights above 2400m. The ride then continues across the top of Italy, into Slovenia and onto Croatia where the next checkpoint is in Vukovar, before heading south through Bosnia and onto Mount Lovcen in Montenegro where the next checkpoint is at the summit. After riding through Albania, Macedonia and Greece along the coast, the riders enter Turkey for the final leg into Istanbul.
No Help Allowed
The rules state that no external support is allowed and each rider is required to carry all provisions or use only those found at commercial services – They can’t rely on friends and family for back up!
Asley’s race number is 64 and when the race starts you can follow his progress via a GPS spot tracker at www.trackleaders.com/transconrace15.
Read all the details here
You can watch a trailer for Melons, Trucks & Angry Dogs – Going AWOL on the Transcontinental Race a documentary series featuring Specialized engineers Recep Yesil and Erik Nohlin who rode the 2013 race on prototype Specialised AWOL adventure bikes.