Aspromarathon, the fourth race of the World Cup of Mountain Biking 2016 in the foothills of the Aspromonte

yescalabria_aspromarathon_02An extraordinary event is how the regional and provincial councillor Francesco Cannizzaro presented the “Aspromarathon” yesterday at the Palazzo Alvaro, regarding the race for the World Cup of the Amateur Mountain Bikers ACSI to be held on October 9th in the charming foothills of the Aspromonte in Reggio.

As already mentioned to our readers in February, the competition, organized by ASD Rolling Bike, sponsored by ACSI (Association of Italian sports centers), represents an important event for the whole of Calabria, particularly Reggio, not only on the level of sports, but also as an opportunity for recognition and relaunching of our territory. “This initiative deserves great attention,” pointed out Cannizzaro, the moderator of the conference, highlighting the importance of the event “open to other athletes outside of Italy,” and the promotion of the territory.

To frame the event in the scenario of cycling races was Laura Bellantoni, head of the provincial Acsi Calabria, who reiterated the importance of the choice made by the Association of Italian Sports Centers to host the last stage of the race, the fourth, the national championship Center/South Marathon actually in the Aspromonte and award here, during the unique Marathon and Granfondo, the winning jersey of the mountain bike world champion. An important recognition for our land, which is growing in this discipline and an attestation of confidence in the Rolling Bike “Association which actively practices this sport in Aspromonte” and that is demonstrating a strong commitment at the organizational level.

A commitment not only to the sport, but to the city. The goal of the Rolling Bike, explains Pietro Gangemi, trail organizer, was to “connect the mountains to the city, embracing all landscape aspects of the territory that have particular characteristics.”

“The Aspromarathon itself is like an outdoor encyclopedia and we are eager to help the athletes get to know and experience our mountains,” continued Gangemi. The trail is designed to bring to life an experience of biodiversity: it will start on sandy soil to cover a stretch of the Grand Italian Trail, the hiking trail approximately 6,166 km long that connects the north and south., engaging the athletes up to 500 vertical meters. With a detour the race continues along the Calopinace River riding up to the valley of the Giants – so dubbed by cyclists for the presence of centuries-old chestnut trees – and then pedaling at about 1,200 m, to get to the highest point of the “Valico di Sella Entrata” at 1400 m.

A challenging race, rich with emotion. “The mountain bike represents an element of connection, a glue to other sports” concluded Gangemi. For this, the bicycle race is combined with a walking path, to allow family members of athletes to experience the local mountains.

“We would like it to be a day of celebration in our home,” was the invitation offered by President of Rolling Bike, Rocco Caridi, who did not hide the complex organization by the team, which was necessary for the realization of the event. Just for the safety alone it’s estimated that it will take about 50 volunteers. It goes without saying the importance of the support of various institutions, confirmed by Cannizzaro and reiterated by the President of the National Park of the Aspromonte, Giuseppe Bombino.

“When we are faced with an associative organization that voluntarily sets in motion a complex machine, the support of institutions is deserved” was the vote of confidence of Cannizzaro, to which is added that of “benevolence” of the President of the Park, Bombino.

Bombino also underlined the common purpose between Rolling and Bike and the Park, the latter pledging to support non impactful and eco-sustainable sports within its territory. That’s framed the mountain bike and pedal assisted project entrusted by the ITT Vallauri/Panella to travel the rough trails in the Aspromonte. The prototype has already been achieved and “It is a captivating cycling also in terms of design,” added Bombino, explaining how it is also connected to a wheelchair to enable the disabled experience the local mountains, or to act as support for the emergency room .

Bombino concluded by reiterating the need to create a synthesis between the different components operating in the area, thanking the ACSI for choosing Reggio and Aspromonte for conducting the event.

Now is the time to sign up and lend support to the first edition of the Aspromarathon, remembering that the race takes place on three routes: “Marathon,” the World Cup round which takes place on a course of 80 km; the amateur race “GranFondo” of 40 km; and the 25-30 km hiking trail.

For more details you can visit the website