Right smack in the middle of winter is the second annual Mountain Bike Ayiti Stage Race. The January 28th through February 2nd event combines Haitian cultural immersion, the opportunity to help build the foundation of an adventure tourism industry, and three days of amateur and professional MTB racing. MTB Ayiti promises participants the chance to see the “real” Haiti, get involved where they can, and race on trails and courses they are -by coming and raising awareness- helping to support. More details (and a video) on why you should seriously consider spending late January racing your bike, building trails, and helping Haitians after the break…
PRESS RELEASE: Port-au-Prince, Haiti – Mountain Bike Ayiti has just a few rider slots still open for the second annual mountain biking stage race in Haiti. The six-day event, which includes three days of breathtaking riding and three days community service and cultural immersion, takes place Jan. 28–Feb. 2, 2014. It is open to both pro and amateur riders.
The event is being held in partnership with Haiti’s Minister of Tourism and the Minister of Sport, Youth, and Civic Action in an effort to highlight Haiti as a prime adventure travel destination.
“One of our goals is to attract world-class events to Haiti to showcase the natural beauty that few have imagined possible. The Haiti Mountain Bike Stage Race is a perfect opportunity to take adventurous athletes through terrain ranging from sandy beaches and lush forests to mountain ridge-lines,” said Stephanie Villedrouin, Minister of Tourism for Haiti.
“Ayiti” translates into “land of mountains”, underscoring Haiti as an unexpectedly ideal locale for mountain biking. Building on that, MTB Ayiti is already one of the most impactful catalysts for Haiti’s adventure tourism industry and demonstrates the potential for companies to deliver measurable positive economic impact. Incubated by Travelcology, the founders are already bringing local partners into the core team and MTB Ayiti will grown into a Haitian owned and operated business.
“People often forget that Haiti is a Caribbean island. There is tremendous opportunity to build Haiti’s tourism industry and a key objective is to shift the world’s perspective on what Haiti has to offer,” said Philip Kiracofe, the founder of MTB Ayiti.
Participants will race and explore two distinctive regions of the country — the majestic mountains towering above Port au Prince and the coastal Cotes des Arcadins. Ranch le Montcel will serve as the first host venue, and riders will ascend thousands of feet through rural villages, forests, and mountain switchbacks with awe-inspiring views. The race then moves to Arcahaie, a coastal community surrounded by mountains. Racers will climb 5,000 vertical feet to the UNESCO protected Fort Delpeche before descending down to a final sprint to the finish at Moulin Sur Mer resort. On the final day, there will be a festival held at the resort, including an awards ceremony, live music, food, kids races, corporate challenges, and cycling safety clinics.
The event will be filmed by an experienced team of industry professionals, with race highlights and results airing on local Haitian networks and covered by international cycling and adventure travel media.
Rider Registration Fee is $1,900, which includes all lodging, meals, transportation, medical and course support, nightly entertainment, cultural immersion activities, and more.
To learn more about MTB Ayiti and register for the event, visit: http://mtbayiti.org