MTB Ayiti International Stage Race in Haiti

26
Oct
2013

This looks like one fantastic cycling event.  I realize getting to it may be difficult, but it’s for a good cause….and man, the photos make it look incredible.

MTB Ayiti International Stage Race in Haiti

by Benjamin Guter

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The MTB Ayiti Stage Race combines a once-in-a-lifetime cultural immersion experience with the opportunity to build the foundation for a sustainable adventure tourism industry while racing a challenging course thru some of the most rugged and awe-inspiring terrain in the Western Hemisphere. 

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The inaugural year featured icons and legends including Sonya Looney, Marla Streb, and Hans “No Way” Rey, and was covered in Switchback, Bicycling and National Geographic (and many more).  This year, we have a more spectator friendly course, an open invitation bike festival event, and closing ceremonies at a beach-side resort.

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Check out pictures, video and international media coverage from last years event at http://mtbayiti.org and on facebook.com/mtbayiti

The 2nd Annual Haiti International Mountain Bike Race is Jan 28 – Feb 2nd, 2014. Register at mtbayiti.org/register

Enjoy Your Ride
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  • http://www.texasmountainbiketrails.com/ Shawn McAfee

    WOW! I want to ride there!

    • Philip Kent Kiracofe

      Shawn, would love to have you join us. http://mtbayiti.org

      • http://dchristianson.blogspot.com/ Daniel Christianson

        Thanks for the extra info-
        Thats the feeling I got from speaking with Sonya, while not knowing exactly what kind of impact it had on the locals there, everyone that participated and was involved with the event came away with a pretty positive feeling about it. I wish you all the best and will do what small part I can to spread the word-

  • http://dchristianson.blogspot.com/ Daniel Christianson

    I followed Sonya’s FB updates during last years event and read a couple articles about it. Later in the year I was fortunate to speak to her a little about it in person. The race looks very challenging but I am also interested in what it is actually bringing to the country. I guess time will tell but from everything I heard it had a positive effect for all the people involved, both participants and locals. Id love to go as a volunteer just for the experience, but looking at them dates I think work is going to have me above the Arctic Circle at that time-

    • http://lovingthebike.com Darryl is Loving the Bike

      I was wondering the same thing, Daniel. Instead of looking into it more, I just decided to assume it’s doing good things for the country. Like you said, Time will Tell.

    • Philip Kent Kiracofe

      Darryl, Daniel, your faith in our intentions is greatly appreciated, and we have gone to great lengths to earn that respect through a passionate commitment to developing a broad ecosystem. While we are still early in the process, there is a world of difference between “will this work?” and “we pulled off the first year”. We have a long way to go, and that means the fun is only just beginning, which is why your support is so critical. Below are some data points from last year. For additional info on how to get involved, please check out http://mtbayiti.org and like our page at http://fb.com/mtbayiti

      VISION: MTB Ayiti was created with a single purpose – to use mountain biking as a vehicle to establish Haiti as a premier adventure travel destination.

      RESULTS: For 5 days in January and February of 2013, an adventurous group of international athletes joined with their Haitian counterparts to race in Haiti’s first mountain bike stage race. MTB Ayiti 2013 was a spectacular success and showcased many aspects of Haiti that are unknown to the rest of the world, the diaspora, and even to many lifelong residents.
      In simple numbers, MTB Ayiti was:

      - 26 athletes- 13 foreigners representing 6 countries, 13 Haitian racers; 20 men, 6 women
      - 105km of biking, with more than 3,200 meters of climbing
      100+ total participants, and nearly 50 temporary paid jobs (staff, crew, drivers, porters, security, film, etc)
      – 3 Haitian-owned bike rental shops opened exclusively stocked with Orbea bikes, and 8 local bike mechanics trained
      – $160,000 total budget, with $130,000 (82%) spent in Haiti or through Haiti-related companies
      – 28 Sponsor companies and 24 Partner organizations
      – 36 positive stories (and counting) in global media outlets ranging from National Geographic to The Miami Herald to adventure travel magazines on 3 continents. see http://mtbayiti.org/media

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