Another edition of legendary Paris-Dakar is in full swing but we have our own dirt-bike heroes at Appenninica.

Racing Medical Team

The medical team at Appenninica MTB Parmigiano Reggiano stage race will again have doctors from RMT – Racing Medical Team – to care and assist all of the riders no matter the terrain. Simone and Michele charmed everyone with their professional yet easygoing attitude, surfer look, and riding skills. Here’s what one rider had to say:

“What one must appreciate – especially in the Italian summer heat – is the fact that all the time around the riders circled two doctors on enduro bikes and constantly asked if the competitors were okay and if they needed water. Mind that this type of service is not often met at races.”

The full Medical Team will be:

  • 2 ambulances with advanced equipment, strategically located and that will move tactically along the race course
  • 2 medical ER in motion who will follow the race along the route
  • 3 assistance motorbikes
  • 1 doctor in the MEDICAL TENT at the camp of each Race Village
  • 2 ALPINE RESCUE teams at the most risky points

9th Wave: More than just a Technical Partner for Appenninica

Wheelsets are such an important part of our mountain bikes. They can enhance the performance – both in terms of speed and traction- they make for a great look, but they can also cause disastrous crashes if they fail.

9th Wave is a company owned and operated by riders. They don’t follow trends but they rather seek what works best by testing their products in the toughest competitions around (including MTB stage races).
Bike mag test winners and champions in strength and durability, 9th Wave carbon wheels add a touch of class to any high-end bike. The Dutch visionary company lead by Peter Wouters and Guido de Jong is often at some of the coolest events around Europe. They are kindly and enthusiastically supporting the first edition – with a long term plan – of Appenninica MTB Parmigiano Reggiano, our stage race that will take place in the summer of 2019.
Their first priorities since the start were quality, honesty and always stay innovative. 9th Wave strives for quality on all fronts: from products to service, from delivery times and post-sales service.



“Honesty means to us: don’t sell or tell nonsense and being able to look at yourself proudly in the mirror every day. And innovation is for us to continue to think outside the box and pay attention to every tiny detail of products. (Feel free to ask any of us. You will notice that in each product by 9th Wave a lot of invisible small “smart” details are processed.) – 9th Wave”

9th Wave will be more than just a Technical Sponsor. 

The collaboration will include co-promotion between the two brands and some important benefits for the riders: mechanical service (official mechanical service at the race), spare wheelsets at the neutral mechanical aid station, a generous discount for all registered riders (not available to the general public).
So, stay tuned for more details and for the orange 9th Wave van at the Appenninica MTB Parmigiano Reggiano race village. An email will follow specifically about the partnership and therefore make sure to register to the newsletter on our website.

Peter 9th Wave

Peter Wouters of 9th Wave is a veteran of MTB stage races

Melanie Alexander: throwing on one wheel and riding on two!

Melanie – Mel – tells us about her passions and how they come together. We loved to find out about her artistic side and therefore we asked her about her creations and racing in the Women category with Sophie Hemming (UK).

I am fairly new to throwing on a wheel having tried it for the first time a year ago. It is a fantastic process; I like both the processes of throwing a form and then turning the form to shape it. Once I got the hang of making a few small cylinders, I started making some pots with Puffins on for an exhibition based on the coast of West Wales. Puffins are a small bird native to the area, quite an interesting little sea bird.

I then made a few cups as Christmas presents painted to suit the individuals and this developed into making some cups as prizes at a local beach race where I set up a stand to sell a few “bike mugs”. Every cup I make is unique. The shape and size of the cup, the handle, the image to place on them and how the image is applied are all elements I am still exploring. Some of the images are painted on, others are in the techniques of Scraffito and inlay. I would like to develop the cups into pairs or small groups of four but still keep their unique character. I have no interest in mass production.

Why bikes?

It just seemed obvious, they are great, practical, take you to fantastic places and make you feel good. I would like to expand on the bike designs and include other cycling related images – places I go and things I see – often on a bike. I’ve also created some bike themed bowls that I will develop further.

For a few years mountain biking has taken over my creative time. Mountain biking is a fantastic sport but racing takes a lot of energy and focus. Last year I decided to make time to explore new skills such as throwing on the wheel, stone carving and bronze casting. Throwing grabbed me much more than I was expecting, I liked the immediacy, the challenge, the process– it takes a lot of focus so can be very relaxing. I like the fact it can be developed in so many ways and there is so much to explore. It has got me excited about making again. I want to continue combining painting and drawing on my ceramics and to develop my throwing skills.


This year I am excited to see where the ceramics goes but also to have a couple of races to aim for. It’s great to have Appenninica MTB Parmigiano Reggiano as a target. Part of the excitement for me is the opportunity to ride and race in new parts of the World and to take part in new events. I love riding in Italy and the Appenninica takes places in a part of Italy I have not raced before so I’m looking forward to experiencing what the area has to offer. It’s going to be an epic week and I’m looking forward to racing with Sophie for the first time as a team. We have ridden some pretty awesome trails together in Wales, Scotland, and Switzerland and soon we’ll be able to include Italy in this list. Hopefully, I can strike the right balance between throwing on one wheel and riding on two!

Our Team

We met when racing XC three years ago. We always have close battles, climbing and descending at similar speeds which will work well for stage racing as a team. We have ridden some pretty awesome trails together and have been talking about racing a stage race together for a couple of years now, but we have waited for the right time and race to appear. There doesn’t appear to be many stage races which are 8 days long and technical which is why Appenninica grabbed our attention.

Mel Alexander


I have been mountain biking for many years, first attracted to stage racing due to the places it took me and the challenge to aim for before focusing on XC for a few years.
Sophie is relatively new to mountain biking in comparison, but with a background playing Rugby for England she has adapted to the sport very quickly. Whilst I have competed in a Mountain biking World cup Sophie has competed in, and won, a different World Cup playing Rugby for England.
Sophie is not only a competitive athlete she is also a mother to Sam and has a demanding job as a vet, which she did alongside training and representing England at Rugby before moving onto her newer passion of mountain biking. My day job is as an Art teacher in a prison and I’m also developing my own range of ceramic pieces with a cycling theme.

Squirt is the Official Chain Lube of Appenninica MTB Parmigiano Reggiano

Squirt Cycling Products is the official chain lubricant partner of Appenninica MTB Parmigiano Reggiano Stage Race.

Achieving your goal at a mountain bike race is as much about training hard, using the best equipment, getting your nutrition dialed in, and hopefully riding your dream bike, right? Yes, but that’s not all.



On a 7-day MTB stage race, as in the format of the Appenninica, you need to make sure your bike is clean and lubed properly every day. The chain and drivetrain are typically the dirtiest parts of your bike and if you don’t use the right lube, well, your bike performance will be impacted and, let’s face it, you will hate yourself when your chain comes off or brakes at a critical point during the race.

That’s why we are happy to partner with Squirt Cycling Products, a South African company. Their liquid lubricant has unique properties that make it ideal for use in any cycling condition. Squirt lube is a wax base, long lasting dry lube that does not contain harmful solvents, is 100% biodegradable and environmentally friendly. They also produce a concentrated biodegradable bike cleaner, a puncture sealant, and a long-lasting application for skin protection on endurance events.

Whichever is your ambition, know that Squirt products are tried, tested and trusted by the biggest names in the world of mountain biking such as Julien Absalon, Rudi Van Houts, Bart Brentjens, Alan Hatherly, Robyn de Groot, Ariane Luthi, and Mariske Strauss, Stefan Garlicki, Bradley Weiss or Johann Potgieter.

Squirt is involved in a number of activities to promote cycling, adventure racing, running and multi-sport around the world. They strive to produce products that are thoroughly tested and accepted by the cycling world as functional and of high quality.

Follow Squirt Cycling Products on Facebook

Parmigiano Reggiano Title Sponsor of Appenninica

The Parmigiano Reggiano Consortium is the title sponsor of the first edition of the Appenninica MTB Stage Race!

The organizers of Appenninica are honored to be able to combine the name of their competition with one of the most popular and appreciated Italian products in the world. The prerequisites for this partnership come from a shared vision for enhancing the territory and from the approach – without compromise – that leads to creating something unique, genuine and authentic.



The element that links Appenninica MTB Parmigiano Reggiano Stage Race and the King of Cheeses is chiefly and above all the territory. The race will take place on the heights that house the dairy farms that produce Parmigiano Reggiano Mountain Product (Prodotto di Montagna) – we shall remind that the production area of the Parmigiano Reggiano Dop includes the provinces of Parma, Reggio Emilia, Modena, Mantova to the right of the Po river and Bologna to the left of the Rhine river (an area of ​​about 10,000 km2). The second key element is the desire to promote sports activities and enhance the passion of athletes who undertake an out of the ordinary endurance race.

Appenninica MTB Parmigiano Reggiano Stage Race is a hard test that will involve an incredible expenditure of calories but good food and typical recipes of the Emilia-Romagna Apennines will not be missing. With Parmigiano Reggiano we have added another truly “tasty” ingredient.

Parmigiano Reggiano is the perfect food for every sportsman, especially for endurance sports, because it is rich in minerals and nutrients, with a precious lipid component and able to provide readily usable energy. Thanks to its organoleptic and nutritional characteristics, it is an inevitable element in the athletes’ diet both in the pre and during and after the competition. Thanks to its production process, the King of cheeses is also naturally free of lactose, additives and preservatives.

The new name of the race is, therefore, APPENNINICA PARMIGIANO REGGIANO STAGE RACE and the logo has been redesigned as will all the communication to accommodate the Consortium’s brand.