Talented women’s field promises top-class race at Appenninica

From Sunday, September 27th to Saturday, October 3rd, Esther Süss, Lorenza Menapace, Regina Marunde, Sarah Reiners and Gaia Ravaioli will enlight a fun and uncertain women’s competition in the MTB stage race on the Emilian Apennines

by Absa Cape Epic

For those who love Emilia-Romagna and cycling, the next two weeks are sure to give strong emotions. In the coming weekend in Imola, road cycling pros will fight for the world titles. At the same time, just an hour and a half away, in Porretta Terme (Bologna), the second edition of Appenninica MTB Parmigiano Reggiano Stage Race will start, taking place from September 27th to October 3rd.

The organizers’ choice to confirm the event, moving it from Summer to the Autumn due to the epidemiological emergency, has proved successful. Many international riders opting in the MTB stage race on the Emilian Apennines to test themselves in the race and enjoy the typical Italian atmosphere.

If in the men’s field, top riders like Tiago Ferreira, Milton Ramos, Lukas Kaufmann, Hans Becking and more have accepted the challenge. On the Women’s side, the competition promises to be exciting and uncertain as ever, with big names of the international off-road scene expected in the Apennines.

Leading the field is Esther Süss, XCM World Champion in 2010 in Sankt Wendel, as well as twice European Champion, in 2008 in Sankt Wendel and 2010 in Montebelluna. Standing out in her palmares are also two Cape Epic overall wins: “I’m really curious to find out what Appenninica holds for me – the Swiss athlete explains -. Looking at the stages’ profiles, it seems that it will be a really hard race, and I usually like it that way. Honestly, I don’t know my opponents very well, but I think the overall level will be high and the race fun. I hope for good weather throughout the week, so to conclude this short and special season in the best way”.

Tenacious Lorenza Menapace won’t certainly stand by after winning the first edition in pair with French Danièle Troesch, and be willing to reclaim the title in the individual race: “In this weird season, Appenninica is my debut in a stage race – said the Italian -. I do not know what to expect, so far I have “just” concluded an Everesting at a high pace, the Oztaler Marathon and the Ortler Marathon, but I’ve never raced multiple days this year. It is like leaping in the dark, but I hope to have fun and finish another stage race, without too much pressure”.

Appenninica is also a new challenge for former German international and Olympian Regina Marunde, who debuted in 1991 in the World Championship right on the Tuscan-Emilian Apennines, in “Il Ciocco”, where the XCO Italian Championships were held just a few days ago: “Last year in the Czech Republic, some French athletes told me that if I was looking for a beautiful MTB race with fun trails, I should have come to Appenninica – Marunde says -. That’s why I can’t wait for it to start, especially in such a particular year. Of course, you always try to be competitive, but the thing I like most is being able to share the experience with people who have my same passion”.

Rounding out the lot of favorites, 2016 Bike Transalp winner Sarah Reiners still wears the German national team jersey in XCM races, and Italian climber Gaia Ravaioli, 2017 and 2019 Endurance World Champion, also looks to factor in this enticing clash of queens at Appenninica.

The Appenninici – From rugby to mountain biking: the unique journey of Sophie Halhead

Among the protagonists of the Appenninica MTB Stage Race many stories of sport and life can be found. Sophie Halhead, who made her second experience in the Emilia-Romagna Apennines in 2023 after taking part in the debut edition, recounts her transition from rugby to the world of mountain biking.

Third time’s the charm: Hans Becking returns to Appenninica for the hat trick

First Elite Man to win two editions of Appenninica MTB Stage Race, the Dutch defending champion of BUFF-Megamo will go for the hat trick from September 2 to 7, 2024. “This race has won my heart,” says Becking.

The Appenninica 2024 route: kicking off in Bologna with 14,000 meters of elevation gain

The organizers have unveiled the route for the MTB stage race, scheduled from September 2 to 7. Confirmed stage venues include Lizzano in Belvedere, Fiumalbo, and Castelnovo ne’ Monti for the grand finale, with Loiano making its debut this year. Participants will face a total of 400 km and 14,000 meters of elevation gain

The Appenninici – An Olympic champion discovers Appenninica

Among the protagonists of the Appenninica MTB Stage Race are many stories of sport and life. Miguel Martinez, Mountain Biking gold medallist at Sydney 2000, participated in the 2023 edition and was impressed by the routes and landscapes of the Emilia-Romagna Apennines and the familiar atmosphere of the race

From Tour the France to the MTB: Appenninica 2024 to kick off in Bologna

The main town of Emilia-Romagna is poised to inaugurate the sixth edition of Appenninica MTB Stage Race on September 2, 2024. Bathed in the afterglow of the Tour de France’s visit in July, the MTB challenge is set to bring more cycling emotions to the city

Appenninica MTB Stage Race Adventure Returns from September 2 to 7, 2024

The renowned MTB stage race in the Emilia-Romagna Apennines confirms its six-day format, announcing its schedule for the 2024 season. Early Bird registration commences on December 1

Becking and Piana conquer Appenninica MTB Stage Race 2023

The Dutch rider of Buff-Megamo is the first male athlete to win two editions of Appenninica MTB Stage Race. Becking sealed the overall win by raising arms again in the last stage, followed by Tiago Ferreira and Tim Smeenge, who join him on the podium in second and third position respectively. Debora Piana takes the women’s GC, while Ilina triumphs again in Vidiciatico. “We are really proud of the athletes’ feedback” said the organizers

Happy day for DMT Racing Team in Vidiciatico. Becking and Piana keep the lead

Tiago Ferreira went all-in in the penultimate stage of Appenninica MTB Stage Race from Fanano to Vidiciatico, trying to pursue the leader’s jersey, but Becking kept everything under control. Same plot in the women’s category, with Russian Kristina Ilina taking her second win and Piana in control

Appenninica’s colour is Orange: Smeenge and Becking the stars of stage 4

The Dutch MTB Marathon National champion raises hands in Fanano, while Becking increases his gap in the GC on Tiago Ferreira. Debora Piana keeps dominating and makes it three in a row. Tomorrow, September 8th, the penultimate stage of Appenninica MTB Stage Race 2023 runs from Fanano to Lizzano in Belvedere

Becking and Piana strenghten their lead in Fiumalbo

The two leaders got the second win at Appenninica MTB Stage Race 2023. The Dutch rider of Buff-Megamo Team sprinted over Tiago Ferreira, while things are getting spicy for the bronze medal, with four riders fighting for the third position. In the women’s field, the Italian of Team Cingolani-Specialized secured the leader jersey with another success in Fiumalbo over Ilina. Tomorrow, September 7th, the peloton heads to Fanano

Ferreira and Piana tame the Mountain Queen Stage

The Portuguese athlete of DMT Racing Team answered back to Becking’s success in the opening stage, while Tronconi and Smeenge remain in contention behind them. Debora Piana took the win and the lead in the women’s category. Tomorrow, September 6th, marks the first-ever border crossing from Emilia-Romagna to Tuscany for the race, with the stage starting and finishing again in Fiumalbo

Becking and Ilina secure victory in the opening act of Appenninica 2023

The Dutch rider from Team Buff-Megamo the Russian of DMT Racing Team have made an impact on the inaugural stage of the Appenninica MTB Stage Race. Completing the men’s podium were Tiago Ferreira and Martino Tronconi, while Debora Piana and Nina Brenn claimed spots on the women’s top-3. Tomorrow, September 5th, comes the anticipated Queen Stage