Race Information

RACE ON

2017 EDITION RACE ON

Description:

MBC 2017 REGISTRATION & OPENING CEREMONY


The game is on folks! The bikes are unpacked and tweaked for ultimate racing setup. Today we registered all 108 participants of the 2017 Mongolian Bike Challenge by Selle SMP. What a fantastic gathering of adventure minded people. A nice vibe of sportiness and solidarity. All athletes got acquainted with each other and some can speak of a reunion seeing each other for the second or even third time!

After handing out the race number plates it was time for the official briefing. Race Director Willy Mulonia proudly presented the experienced MBC crew and gave overview of the oncoming stages. Logistics Manager Roberto Gazzoli instructed the athletes about the transport of the bags and luggage and provided an insight in what to expect at every camp. Race Referee Daniele RD-Zone explained the rules of the race and how times are monitored and provided a full instruction how results will be communicated. It can be difficult for athletes to contact the people back home as we are in the middle of the Mongolian steps where there is not everywhere an internet connection available. The MBC crew will upload the race results every day on the website via satellite connection. We will also communicate all messages with #MBCbySelleSMP17.

Tomorrow at 8.30 AM local time we will leave the city under police guidance and then the race is good to go. The contrast will be huge. From crowded inner city of Ulan Bator to the beautiful Mongolian steppes. Six days of cycling through one of the most thinly populated areas in the world. It’s gonna be a heck of a ride!

Stage Gallery:

Stage Chronicle:

STAGE 1 2017 MBC COMMUNIQUE

105km 1500m climbing


After a relatively cold and rainy few days in the capital city Ulaan Bataar just before the start of the Mongolia Bike Challenge presented by Selle SMP 2017, the local deities smiled kindly on the eighth edition by presenting the participants with a beaming blue sky and high temperatures.

Perfect weather for a little bike ride!

The riders set off from outside the Bayangol Hotel to ride a 15km neutralised zone out of the city before turning off the paved roads onto the tracks that those who have ridden in the MBC will be all too familiar with. From there the race referee declared the start of the 105km stage, with the riders setting off at a lightning pace, once which many would pay for later on.

Early nerves mixed with adrenalin and a rutted path that featured many small ups and downs saw splits open early on, and by KM20 there were two leaders out front with a lead over a chasing pack of two minutes. Goose van der Meer of the Netherlands and Elijus Civilis of Lithuania rode hard from there on and never looked back, and it would be these two that would fight it out for the first KOM time bonus at the 30KM point and eventually also for the overall GC lead.

Behind these two the Mongolian rider Tumenbayar Batkishig and Nicolas Raynaud of France tried to claw their way back but they were soon swallowed up by a group of five which included Hamish Morrin (NZ), Justin Morris (AUS), Dow Wei Cheam (Malaysia), and Guillem Busquets and Odei Gil Migueliz, both of Spain.

Morris deserves a special mention for riding the stage on a rented bike, his own having not yet shown up in Mongolia!

With van der Meer taking the 30 second time bonus at the KOM and Civilis taking 20 seconds, ten minutes behind them it was Hamish Morrin who took third and the 10 seconds on offer.

At the finish line we saw a reverse of the fight for the KOM, with Civilis taking the stage win by a wheel from var der Meer. Ten minutes back it was Gil Migueliz who took the sprint for 3rd place.

So the stage results for the men looks like:

Elijus Civiis
Gosse van der Meer
Odei Gil Migueliz

However due to impact of the time bonuses at the KOM point, the overall GC is:

1. Gosse van der Meer: 3hr 49.51
2. Elijus Civilis: +9 secs
3. Hamish Morrin: +1 minutes 8 secs

Each man put in a great ride and Morrin deserves a hand for riding in the Veteran 1 category yet taking 3rd on the GC.

The women's standings are:

1. Elke Willersin: 4hr 59.36
2. Jo O'Shaughnessy: +4 minutes
3. Kia King: +5min 05.33

In the Team 3 Competition Team 125 lead Extreme Mugello with Matador Racing in 3rd.

Tomorrow's stage 122km with 2900m of climbing. This will be a tough day in the saddle.

Stage Gallery:

Classifications:

Description:

  • WE ARE GOING TO SLEEP IN A GER CAMP.
  • BED AND "HOT SHOWER"
  • 3G COVERAGE

Overview

Departure: Ulaan Baatar Down Town
Arrival: GEO MANDAL GER CAMP
Distance: 105Km
Daily Climb: 1930m

Difficulty

Climb Awards: 1
Technical Challenge: Low
Physical Challenge: Medium-High

Race Timing

Start Time: 9:30
Max. Allowed Time: 10 h
Last Arrival Time: 7:30 pm

Stage Chronicle:

Stage 2 of the Mongolia Bike Challenge presented by Selle SMP: 

Who do I complain to about those last two hills? Anonymous, Stage 2 finish line, MBC 2017.

Stage 2 of the Mongolia Bike Challenge presented by Selle SMP - the Queen Stage - did not disappoint. With over 2900 meters of climbing over 120km this was always going to be the hardest day of this year’s editions, and the fact that it was the hottest day in MBC history did the riders no favours. 

Undeterred by these factors, the race started at a heated pace and split almost immediately, with 7 riders breaking free on the approach to the famous Chinggis Khan statue at KM7. Race leader Gosse van der Meer was notably absent, having had a mechanical problem with his rear wheel at the start. 

He soon caught up though, and the group - containing Justin Morris, Hamish Morrin, Visilius Civilis, Nicolas Raybaud, Odei Gil Migueliz, Darren Cousins and Daniel Hermann - pressed on to the first hill at KM15, a gruelling 6km climb. It was here that Civilis attacked, taking van der Meer with him with Raynaud in hot pursuit.

Behind these three the rest coped with the incline best they could as they made their way towards the first KOM point at 37km. On that hill ump the KOM and the 30 second bonus on offer, van der Meer decided it was time to go and go he went, taking a remarkable 90 second lead as he reached the summit over 2nd placed Civilis with Raybaud close behind. This pair worked together to pull back van der Meer as the hills continued to come, and a stiff headwind put the riders under pressure.

Further down the field, riders valiantly rose to the challenge of this hardest stage, a collective effort framed by a stunning sky filled with gleaming clouds and scenery of the most magnificent sort, sweeping vistas of grassland punctuated by rocky peaks. To be sure, everyone who finished today  will remember this stage for many years to come.

Back up at the front, there was no catching van der Meer, even despite the Dutchman suffering severe cramps in the run in thanks to the loss of a water bottle. Behind him, the Lithuanian Civilis out the hammer down and distanced Raybaud, crossing the line for second place by a clear margin over the Frenchman.

Stage 2 of the 2017 MBC top finishers are:

  • 1.Gosse van der Meer
  • 2.Elijius Civilis
  • 3.Nicolas Raybaud

The GC Overall

  • 1. Gosse van der Meer 9hrs 7min 41s          
  • 2. Elijius Civilis @4mins 4s
  • 3 Nicolas Raynaud@20mins 10s

The Womens top 3 for Stage 2:

  • 1.Elke Willersin
  • 2.Jo O’Shaugnessy
  • 3.Christine Vollner

The Womens Category after Stage 2:

  • 1.Elke Willersin
  • 2.Jo O’Shaugnessy
  • 3.Christine Vollner

The Team 3 Category:

  • 1.Matador Racing A
  • 2.Extreme Bike Mujello 31hr 51mins 02s
  • 3.Iberoteam 35hr 22mins 08s

Stage Gallery:

Classifications:

Description:

The Mongolia Bike Challenge shows racers very quickly what this race is all about – a tough challenge set within epic, natural beauties. The track varies between fast and smooth to rough and somewhat technical. 
 

  • WE ARE GOING TO SLEEP IN A GER CAMP.
  • BED AND "HOT SHOWER"
  • 3G COVERAGE

Overview

Departure: GEO MANDAL GER CAMP
Arrival: GEO MANDAL GER CAMP
Distance: 120Km
Daily Climb: 2750m

Difficulty

Climb Awards: 2
Technical Challenge: Medium
Physical Challenge: Very High

Race Timing

Start Time: 8:30 am
Max. Allowed Time: 10 h
Last Arrival Time: 6:30 pm

Stage Chronicle:

Stage 3 of the Mongolia Bike Challenge presented by Selle SMP.

This 105km third stage with 1900m of climbing began with a real bang when the third placed rider on GC, Nicolas Raybaud of France took off from the gun in an attempt to shake up the top three. His attack caused the front runners to step up the pace early on which in turn lead to the pack becoming strung out across the Mongolian steppe straight from the off.
In all fairness this was as much as a result of Raybaud's attack as the wear and tear of the previous two day's of hard riding.

At the first feed station at 29km Raybaud led over the hill followed one minute later by an elite chase pack of Hamish Morrin, Gosse van der Meer, Elijius Civilis and Odei Gil Migueliz. 

These four steadily cut into the slim advantage held by Raybaud on the run in to the first KOM point of the stage, a demanding 5km climb that began gently enough but soon pitched up, steep enough for van der Meer to put his climbing ability into effect. The young Dutchman took 2nd behind Raybaud, earning him a 20 second bonus, with Civilis close on his heels, taking 10 seconds. 

A lush sweeping descent followed that the true descenders in the race relished, and up front the pressure put on by Civilis and van der Meer saw them reel in Raybaud, whose valiant effort to break the other two men's hold on first and second overall came to an end. 
At the second feed zone at 68km the three set off together. Facing them was the last KOM climb of the day, a long steep climb that sits in the middle of a national park, the main feature of a looped route that would take the riders back down past the 2nd feed zone. Van der Meer wasted no time in putting the hammer down and began soon to distance Rybaud, and though Civilus hung on for as long as he could, it was van der Meer who took the 30 second bonus at te top, with Civilus taking 20 seconds behind him. 

It was on the descent that things began to go awry for the first placed van der Meer and third placed Raybaud. In van der Meer's case, he was holding a 30 second lead over Civilis when he mistook the route signs pointing him out of the loop and onto the 10km finishing straight and instead set off back on the very same loop that he had just completed. Raybaud in third made the same mistake.

Civilis, unaware that van der Meer up ahead had gone off route, set off in what he believed was a pursuit. As he crossed the finish line some 10 kilometers later he believed he had ridden into another 2nd place, but in fact he had won the stage. 

Civilis finished in 4.43.32 at an impressive average of 24.72km per hr. Guillem Basquets came in in 2nd place, 11 mins 13 seconds down. Van der Meer rounded out the top three 6 seconds behind Basquets.

In the women's race Jo O'Shaughnessy put in a great ride to not only take her first stage win but to also take the pink jersey of the women's GC. 

Stage 3 of the 2017 MBC top finishers are:

  • 1.Elijius Civilis 4.43.32
  • 2.Guillem Basquets at 11 mins 13
  • 3.Gosse van der Meer at 11 mins 19

The Men's GC Overall

  • 1. Elijius Civilis 13.55.17
  • 2. Gosse van der Meer 14.02.12
  • 3.Guillem Basquets 14.29.25

The Women’s top 3 on Stage 3:

  • 1.Jo O’Shaugnessy 6.05.40
  • 2.Elke Willersin at 11mins 50 secs
  • 3.Christine Vollner 15mins 13 secs

The Women’s Category after Stage 3:

  • 1.Jo O’Shaugnessy    18.11.32
  • 2.Elke Willersin  18.14.16
  • 3.Christine Vollner 18.14.28

The Team 3 Category:

  • 1.Extreme Bike Mugello 49.46.40
  • 2.Matador Racing A 50.09.43
  • 3.Picchio Adventures 54.10.54

Stage Gallery:

Classifications:

Description:

Another challenging stage set within the characteristic Siberian tundra landscape of this area. You are now racing in the Khan Khentii National Park where the valleys are full of nomadic families and their herds.

  • TONIGHT WE ARE GOING TO SLEEP IN OUR CAMP.
  • DON'T FORGET YOUR WARM SLEEPING BAG AND MATTRESS
  • NO 3G COVERAGE + NO WI-FI...ENJOY YOUR STAY :) 

Overview

Departure: GEO MANDAL GER CAMP
Arrival: TUUL RIVER
Distance: 117Km
Daily Climb: 2110m

Difficulty

Climb Awards: 2
Technical Challenge: High
Physical Challenge: High

Race Timing

Start Time: 8:30 am
Max. Allowed Time: 10 h
Last Arrival Time: 6:30 pm

Stage Chronicle:

The last few riders crossed the line windswept and wet after today's 127km stage, tired and worn despite it being a relatively flat stage due in large part to the hard efforts of the preceding three days. But come in they did, with the last finisher's arrival being keenly awaited by a large crowd of those already finished.

To great cheers Aina Martinez-Atienza crossed the line, immediately asking "Where's the beer?", a question that was cheered almost as loudly as her arrival.

Earlier in the morning the riders left the bucolic Eidelweiss Camp to head off through a bumpy 8km stretch that tested both shocks and reflexes to emerge into a wide valley leading up to the stage's only KOM point at KM31.

Until mid way up the 4% 4km climb a group of some 30 riders were together, however it was then that Elijius Civilis, the race leader, attacked to stretch out the pack. He crossed the KOM line first to take the 30 seconds bonus with Odei Gil Migueliz taking 2nd and Nicolas Raybaud 3rd.

Gosse van der Meer was not far behind, looking for an opportunty to attack Civilis and take back the race lead. However Van der Meer, a slender rider, prefers the steep climbs. His chance may well come on Stage 5.

By KM60 the lead group had thinned out to 16 riders at which point a rain shower arrive that shook things up even further. It was at this point that Veteran 1 classification leader Hamish Morrin punctured, causng him to lose touch.

Those ahead pushed on. By KM70 the elite group had thinned to 9 riders. Busquets, Civilis, van der Meer and Gil Migueliz were doing the majority of the work to extend the lead, with Cheam, Cowen, Gil Martinez, Strooper and Tom Op de Beeck in file behind, sheltering from the wind.

The podium positions were fought over by these riders with van de Meer taking the win after 4 hours and fifty minutes of riding by one second from Gil Migueliz with Busquets in third.
 
Race leader Civilis came 6th, losing just 4 seconds to van der Meer, who is second on the GC.

In the Women's race, Jo O'Shaughnessy extended her lead up front with her closest rival Elke Willersin in 2nd, and Christine Vollner in 3rd.

Tomorrow's 5th stage is 88km with 1900m of climbing, a deceptively hard stage with several steep pitches and more bonus seconds on offer at the KOM points. For sure we will see a battle royale between van der Meer and Civilis, with the Dutchman looking to claw back time lost on Stage 3 from the Lithuanian.

Stage 4 of the 2017 MBC top finishers are:

  • 1.Gosse van der Meer 4.50.00
  • 2.Odei Gil Migueliz at 1 secs
  • 3.Guillem Basquets at 2 secs

The Men's GC Overall after Stage 4

  • 1. Elijius Civilis    18.44.52
  • 2. Gosse van der Meer at 7.20.00
  • 3.Guillem Basquets at 34.35.00

The Women’s top 3 on Stage 4:

  • 1.Jo O’Shaugnessy  5.31.29
  • 2.Elke Willersin at 6.01.00
  • 3.Christine Vollner 25.21.00

The Women’s Category after Stage 4:

  • 1.Jo O’Shaugnessy    23.43.01
  • 2.Elke Willersin     24.01.06
  • 3.Christine Vollner  24.25.58

The Team 3 Category after STage 4:

  • 1.Matador Racing A     65.34.12
  • 2.Extreme Mujello      65.45.07
  • 3.Picchio Adventures   70.15.14

Stage Gallery:

Classifications:

Description:

The difficulty in today’s stage is the long distance. With 143km, Stage 4 is the longest stage of the MBC. No tourists visit this area so the trails are used only by locals and even then, infrequently. BTW this will be a really fast stage. 

  • WE ARE GOING TO SLEEP IN A GER CAMP.
  • BED AND "HOT SHOWER"
  • BAD 3G COVERAGE + POOR WI-FI

Overview

Departure: TUUL RIVER
Arrival: STEPPE NOMAD GER CAMP
Distance: 143Km
Daily Climb: 1150m

Difficulty

Climb Awards: 1
Technical Challenge: Low
Physical Challenge: Medium

Race Timing

Start Time: 8:30 am
Max. Allowed Time: 10 h
Last Arrival Time: 6:30 pm

Stage Chronicle:

At 88km Stage 5 of the Mongolian Bike Challenge presented by Selle SMP might have been considered a 'light' day by some, however with 1,500m of climbing and three KOM points, it proved to be anything but. Consider also the previous 4 days of hard riding and then throw in a stiff wind that hit the riders in the 2017 MBC from all directions, this was anything but an easy stage, as all those who completed the course will attest to.

Setting off from the relative comfort of the hot showers and excellent lodgings at the Steppe Nomad camp, the riders faced an immediate test of a 1 kilometer climb at 8%, then hurtled down the reverse side to hit 35km of flat trails towards the first KOM of the day at 45km.
Seizing the initiative yet again, it was Nicolas Raybaud who attacked firts, seeking to put the disappointment of going off course on Stage 3 behnd him. In a repeat of Stage 4 the top riders on the GC allowed him to stretch out the gap to one minute then kept their speed constant to be sure that the Frenchman did not get too much of a buffer.

Raybaud has been getting steadily stronger as the race has gone on and he put this to good use to come over the summit of the first KOM point in first. Behind him, the pace of race leader Elijius Civilis and 2nd placed Gosse van der Meer shattered the chase group, which had until the foot of the hill been some 14 riders strong. Civilis summited 5 seconds ahead of van der Meer to take the 20 seconds bonus on offer and then the two men regrouped to work together to reel in Raybaud.

Guillem Busquets of Spain soon joined them, having pulled out all the stops on the tricky descent. Some 2 minutes behind the Australian former road pro Justin Morris and Veteran 1 category rider Hamish Morrin, who has been impresive all week, worked to distance those chasing behind.

By KM 50 Civilis and van der Meer had joined Raybaud at the front of the race. Van der Meer's chances of the overall win had all but disappeared when he too went off course on Stage 3 and he was riding for pride, fired up to put on a performance worthy of his talents, yet it was Civilis who took the full 30 seconds bonus at the second KOM at KM67, with the Dutchman close in second and Raybaud, now sufferng slightly as a result of his earlier efforts,   20 seconds behind, although he descended quickly to rejoin on the downhill.

From there on in each riders' mind was only on the finish line. With 28km to go the riders faced a long flat section through a majestic valley littered with packs of horses running wild and the ever watchful eagles circling above.

On the last KOM climb at 79km the steady gradient suited the Lithuanian and sure enough it was Civilus who took the bonus, further consolidating his already large lead over van der Meer. Raybaud finally succumbed to the pressure and lost contact with the two in front of him.
 
The Dutchman and the Lithuanian powered ahead towards the finish at the 13th Century Ger Camp, set amongst impressive rocky outcrops and pristine meadows. As the pair rounded the last turn it was van dr Meer who had the lead and he powered on to take the Stage 5 win by 3 seconds over Civilis. Raybaud came in tired but happy in third.

In the women's event, both leader Jo O'Shaughnessy and second placed Elke Willersin succumbed to stomach problems, leaving Australian Kia King to take the victory by a considerable margin over Christine Vollmer of Germany, who is third on the Women's GC. Jo O'Shaughnessey mustered all her resources and determination to take 3rd on the stage.

With one more stage to come in this year's MBC, a 25km individual time trial, the riders can smell the finish line but tomorrow's stage is anything but easy, with several short sharp pinches and some tricky washed out trails to navigate.

Stage 5 of the 2017 MBC top finishers are:

  • 1. Gosse van der Meer 3.22.58
  • 2. Elijius Civilis at  2 secs
  • 3. Nicolas Raybaud at  1min 42secs

The Men's GC Overall after Stage 5

  • 1. Elijius Civilis  22.06.32
  • 2. Gosse van der Meer at 7.48
  • 3. Guillem Basquets at 40.20

The Women’s top 3 on Stage 5:

  • 1. Kia King  4.01.18
  • 2. Christine Vollner 4.12.45
  • 3.Jo O’Shaugnessy  4.26.44

The Women’s Category after Stage 5:

  • 1.Jo O’Shaugnessy  6.03.13  
  • 2.Elke Willersin     at 28.58
  • 3.Christine Vollner  at 35.11

The Team 3 Category after Stage 5:

  • 1.Matador Racing A   77.23.56  
  • 2.Extreme Mujello      at 37.00
  • 3.Picchio Adventures   at 5.10.00

Stage Gallery:

Classifications:

Description:

This stage is relatively short but should not be taken lightly. We will finish in the XIII Century National Park. 

  • WE ARE GOING TO SLEEP IN A GER CAMP.
  • BED AND COLD SHOWER
  • NO 3G COVERAGE + NO WI-FI...ENJOY YOUR STAY :) 

Overview

Departure: STEPPE NOMAD GER CAMP
Arrival: XIII CENTURY
Distance: 88Km
Daily Climb: 1481m

Difficulty

Climb Awards: 3
Technical Challenge: Medium
Physical Challenge: High

Race Timing

Start Time: 9:30
Max. Allowed Time: 10 h
Last Arrival Time: 7:30 pm

Stage Chronicle:

The Mongolian Bike Challenge presented by Selle SMP is over.

We are done and thoroughly dusted. There will be no more pedals turned in anger nor indeed joy on these hills this year, no more faces contorted in suffering - at least not the bike, some may still however be grimacing from the effect of the stomach bug going around the camp but let us not discuss such matters here!

It has in fact been a glorious edition of this testing event, with only two rain showers duing the 6 stages in what has otherwise been perfect weather. Make no mistake, the participants in this edition were treated to Mongolian nature at it´s finest. If each rider had a cent for every golden eagle they have seen they´d have at least a euro each, and if it were the same for the fine horses that roam the plains they´d have more than enough for a night on the tiles back in Ulaan Bataar.
 
On to Stage 6, the final stage, a 25km individual time trial which included 500m of climbing, most of it packed into two short and very steep climbs.

For many lower down the general classification today´s stage was a case of getting through uninjured, and a chance to drink in the enormity of their achievements. Others still had to push hard to keep the slim gaps hey had over their rivals, friends and compatriots, riding for pride and bragging rights and possibly for a beer at the final awards ceremony and party, to be held this evening.

At the top of the Overall GC, the Women´s and the Team 3 classifcations, the top three spots were decided, with the gaps between riders and teams too large now to be upturned over such a short distance - if, that is, as no one took an untimely tumble.

In the Overall GC, ELijius Civilis of Lithuania cemented his position at the top with a fine ride to cme in top of the table. Civilus´ time of 53.39 was over two minutes faster than the Spaniard Gil Migueliz who made it home in 55.49, with Nicolas Raybaud in third at 57.18.
88 riders of the original 108 completed this year´s event. All however will be going home with memories they will cherish for a very long time indeed.

The GC Overall Top 3 for 2017 are:

  • 1. Elijius Civilis     23.00.11
  • 2. Gosse van der Meer  23.12.05
  • 3. Guillem Basquets    23.42.41

Stage 6 of the 2017 MBC top finishers are:

  • 1. Elijius Civilis 53.39
  • 2. Guillem Busquets 55.49
  • 3. Nicolas Raybaud 57.18

The Women´s Top 3 for 2017 are:

  • 1. Jo O´Shaughnessy 29.23.58
  • 2. Christine Vollmer 29.51.10
  • 3. Elke Wilkersinn 30.00.29

The Women’s top 3 on Stage 6:

  • 1. Christine Vollmer 1.12.27
  • 2. Tessa Wiese 1.13.59   
  • 3. Jo O´Shaughnessy 1.14.13

The Women’s Category after Stage 6:

  • 1.Jo O’Shaugnessy at 6.03.13  
  • 2.Elke Willersin at 28.58
  • 3.Christine Vollner  at 35.11

The Team 3 Category for the MBC 2017:

  • 1. Matador Racing A 80.36.01
  • 2. Extreme Mujello 81.41.38
  • 3. Picchio Adventures 85.51.54

Stage Gallery:

Classifications:

Description:

We are proud to announce this last stage as our Time trial Stage
This will start at 10 am, seeing the last rider on the GC setting off first, in ascending order in 1 minute intervals, with the first rider on the GC setting off last. The course is mostly fast double track, with a total of 489 mt gained over the route. There will be no refueling station along the course, so be sure to take what you need with you.
This evening is our reward banquet. We will crown our Champions and award the Official Finishers with the Mongolia Bike Challenge.

  • WE ARE GOING TO SLEEP IN A GER CAMP.
  • BED AND COLD SHOWER
  • NO 3G COVERAGE + NO WI-FI...ENJOY YOUR STAY :) 

Overview

Departure: XII CENTURY
Arrival: XIII CENTURY
Distance: 25Km
Daily Climb: 489m

Difficulty

Climb Awards: 1
Technical Challenge: Low
Physical Challenge: High

Race Timing

Start Time: 10:00 am
Max. Allowed Time: 4 h
Last Arrival Time: 2:00 pm

Stage Chronicle:

“Someone yesterday was comparing delivering a baby to riding the Mongolia Bike Challenge. If I think about the MBC, I have been in delivery for 7 years, and this year’s edition is the child, the product of all that hard work. This has truly been the best edition yet. I cannot express the happiness I feel here today in front of all of you, the finishers of the 2017 MBC…”

- MBC Founder Willy Mulonia  final address to the 108 participants of the 2017 Mongolia Bike Challenge presented by Selle SMP at the closing ceremony. 13th Century Camp, Tor Province, Mongolia. 

Many an MBC have shone but this edition literally glittered, featuring a daily cascade of blue skies, clear trails, scintillating racing up at the head of all the classifications and heroic efforts of willpower and determination by those whose main aim each morning was to get through the day in one piece and to make the time cut.
 
Make no mistake, there was plenty of blood, sweat and tears going about, with one rider suffering a half-dislocated shoulder, a few cases of high fevers sweeping the camp, the usual stomach issues here and there and a few scrapes from falls too. On not just one occasion a rider crossed the finish line in a cloud of tears, that curious mix of exhaustion and elation engulfing them, a singular feeling that only one whom has battled against both the elements and their own fears to reach safe harbour can attest.

There may well be races as demanding as the MBC in their own way, but it is the vastness of the environment that makes this event unique. Without flora about the trails and hills even climbing up a 2km hill can seem interminably long, each pedal turn moving you mere inches, and a 30km flat ride through a valley big enough to fit three major airports in it feels like a trek across Wyoming. And yet this is the appeal of this landscape, the wide sweeping vistas, the utter lack of the sounds of the modern world, the remoteness that makes digital communication impossible.

It is not so much that you experience Mongolia, rather, you are engulfed, encompassed by it.

To gaze upon the clearest and closest Milky Way that most of us have ever seen, to think about our early ancestors doing the very same whilst creating gods to explain the wonders in the heavens, to set out each day on a voyage where human is pitted against environment and the self, carrying the water and meagre food supplies needed to survive, and to dream, indeed, of the infinite, unknowable universe of which we are a part - well, this, rather grandly put, is the Mongolia Bike Challenge!

Our heroes were all. From MBC 2017 winner Elijius Civilis and his humble and humorous character, to the indefatigable Schartz Aloyse and his utter joy at getting on the podium for the first time in his life, to Alessia Candellone and Giorgio Marini on their tandem, to mother and daughter Jenny Anderson and Kia King who crossed the line together after the final ITT, and to John da Costa who out behind him the bad luck and disappointment of two previous attempts to receive his finisher’s shirt and also the loudest cheer of the night, all are heroes.

We, Race Director and the crew of the Mongolia Bike Challenge presented by Selle SMP 2017, salute you. 

You are our motivation. Our champions. Heroes all.

Stage Gallery:

Classifications:

Description:

Overview

Departure:
Arrival:
Distance: Km
Daily Climb: m

Difficulty

Climb Awards: 0
Technical Challenge: Low
Physical Challenge: Low

Race Timing

Start Time:
Max. Allowed Time:
Last Arrival Time:

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