The circuit’s 4th and final stage, Alpago Bike Funtastic (June 29th – July 1st) was presented in Ponte nelle Alpi (Belluno, Italy). Tempier, Avancini and European Champion Belomoina among the standout names of the race that that will assign Internazionali’s overall titles
Land of mountains, incredible landscapes, rivers and lakes, and more: after three seasons, Alpago will be home of the international Mountain Bike once again. The successful 2015 European Championships are a beautiful memory, but the Venetian Pre-Alps are ready to welcome the final showdown of Internazionali d’Italia Series, one of the most important Mountain Bike circuits in Europe, started in April in Nals, followed by the stages in San Marino and Pineto.
Organized by AS S.C. Chies d’Alpago, Alpago Bike Funtastic (Lamosano di Chies d’Alpago, June 29th – July 1st) was presented in Ponte nelle Alpi (Belluno, Veneto, Northern Italy) on Saturday June 23rd. Attending the press conference, along with OC President Paolo Zanon, were Province of Belluno’s President Roberto Padrin, Italian Cycling Federation’s Veneto Committee President Igino Michieletto, CONI Belluno Province delegate Luciano Trevisson and athletes Giorgia Marchet, Lorenzo Dal Piva and the XCE Italian Champion Andrea Menichetti.
“International events like Alpago Bike Funtastic are important for local touristic promotion – said Province of Belluno’s President Padrin. – The municipalities of the ‘Conca dell’Alpago’ have developed a fruitful synergy for our territory”.
Italian Cycling Federation’s Veneto Committee President Michieletto stressed the importance of the activity of Alpago Bike Funtastic’s OC. “I wish to congratulate Paolo Zanon and the whole organizing committee. Thanks to events like this, our riders can improve, comparing against the top riders in the World.”
Compared to the 2015 European Championships, Alpago Bike Funtastic’s circuit was renewed, but without surrendering anything of its characteristic toughness. The organizers made some adjustments to the start and finish areas, now located in the same place. In addition, the track will be speeded up with the goal of increasing the areas of visibility and make the even more spectacular for the public. Junior and Open riders will face a very long 5,2 Km loop characterized by an 135-meter elevation for each lap, whilst the youth categories will face a 4,7 Km circuit with 105 meters of overall elevation.
Alpago Bike Funtastic’s main event is the final round of Internazionali d’Italia Series, to be held on Saturday June 30th. In the Open categories, young leaders Gioele Bertolini (Focus Selle Italia) and Marika Tovo (Team Rudy Project) will have to watch out for veterans Martin Loo (Hawaii Express) and Serena Calvetti (KTM-Protek Dama), but they will not be the only contenders for stage win.
Frenchman Stephane Tempier (Bianchi-Countervail) and Brazilian Henrique Avancini (Cannondale Factory Racing – #3 and #4 of the UCI World Ranking, respectively – will try to claim an important success in the Men’s Open race, as well as the other Bianchi-Countervail’s leader, Marco Aurelio Fontana, and Italian Champion Gerhard Kerschbaumer (Torpado-Gabogas), winner in Pineto’s Aprutium Race. In the women’s race, European Champion Yana Belomoina (CST Sandd American Eagle) will try to redeem yourself a difficult early part of the season. Also at the start will be Brit Evie Richards, U23 Cyclocross World Champion and overall third in the UCI Mountain Bike World Cup (U23 category), whilst Giorgia Marchet (Rudy Project) leads the group of local riders.
“I want to make a good showing at Alpago Bike Funtastic – explains Marchet – It’s the home race for me and one of the most important of the season. Il will try to defend my spot on the Internazionali d’Italia Series’ overall podium before focusing on the upcoming World Cup stages and the Italian National Championships”.
The Junior Men’s race (9.30 am CET), will open Internazionali d’Italia Series’ programme on Saturday June 30th, followed by Junior and Open Women (12:00 am) and Open Men (3:00 pm) – the latter race to be broadcast in LIVE streaming on the circuit’s official channels together with the highlights from the other categories.
On Friday June 29th, Alpago Bike Funtastic’s programme will be inaugurated by the Italian Cross-Country Eliminator National Championships: a highly-spectacular discipline characterized by short and technical races with a qualification rounds formula. Finally, on Sunday July 1st, the Italian Youth Cross-Country National Championships will close the programme in style.
“Alpago is proudly setting up to host another major Mountain Bike event – said OC President Paolo Zanon – We have organized one of the most important MTB races in Italy since 1990 in a territory historically related to this discipline. That’s why we are so grateful to those who have supported us this far, starting with Veneto Region, Province of Belluno, Unione Montana dell’Alpago and the municipalities of Chies d’Alpago, Tambre, Alpago and Ponte nelle Alpi, and partners like Selle SMP, Gist, Suzuki Manzotti Automobili, Terna Group, New Koko’s, Dolomie, Giesse, Prosecco DOC”.