Published on : Friday, September 20, 2019
The 6th edition of Samarathon, the desert single-track mountain biking (MTB) race, returns to the wilderness of the Negev and Southern Arava Desert February 19 – 22, 2020. Samarathon, which is the longest mountain bike race in Israel, will span the ancient camel trails and single tracks of the Israel Bike Trail to the amazing Riders’ Village in Timna Park.
Desert riding is a unique style offering multiple personal challenges; hot weather even in the middle of winter, no trees, vegetation or shade, sandy or loose terrain, unending ascents and super-flowing single-tracks with perfect traction, designed and built by riders for riders. For these reasons, Samarathon is aimed at tough and seasoned mountain bikers who can wrestle with four long riding days in desert conditions. Those facing the challenge will get to relax in the Riders’ Village with delicious food, cold drinks, fresh fruit shakes, music and more.
The 2020 edition is accredited by the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI), the world governing body for sports cycling. Apart from appearing on the yearly UCI calendar, the top riders of the male and female categories will be able to get UCI points for their world ranking that can help them gain the slot to the Tokyo Olympic Games, prize money according to UCI rules and more. As part of becoming a UCI sanctioned MTB marathon, Samarathon is expanding to four racing days: A prologue plus three full stages.
The MTB competition will be run at the highest level, with professional timekeeping, meticulous course signing, teams of course-marshals, emergency vehicles, feed zones and media teams.