Marathon mountain bike races
Photograph by on Flickr.
Almost all of the parcipitants are elite professional mountain bike racers. The number of these events and those taking part in them have grown greatly.
The typical event in the USA is either based on time, usually 6, 12 or 24 hours, or distance, the most Marathon mountain bike races common being 100 miles (161 km) Events based on hours typically allow either people to compete individually or as part of the team. Marathon events in the USA and Canada are typically longer than 100 kilometers and are very different than cross county races. The UCI has established a championship series for Marathon mountain bike races such events, the Marathon World Cup.
Events held in Europe are typically just a longer than average cross county mountain bike race. In 2006 nearly 100 events were held and most had more than 150 racers. Cross-country 路 Downhill 路 Freeride 路 Dual slalom 路 Four-cross 路 Marathon 路 24 hour 路 Enduro 路 Epic 路 Trials .
Distances events are almost all solo events. The first such events began to be held routinely in the early 1990s Typical each year there were less than 10 events each with less than 50 racers.
The UCI rules limit events to distances between 40 km (24.9 miles) and 120 km Marathon mountain bike races (74.5 miles) and for 2006 limits event to New Zealand, Hungary, Germany, Switzerland, Italy, France and the Netherlands.