Mountain Biking - Andalucia Bike Race 2012


By Chris Chaplow

The second edition of Andalucía Bike Race took place between 26 February and 2 March 2012 in the provinces of Córdoba and Jaén. The winning Men´s team was Spanish World Champion José Antonio Hermida and his team mate, Dutch champion Rudi Van Houts, with 16 hours 33 minutes and 32 seconds total time, in the women´s category, Sally Bigham and Milena Landtwig were almost unbeatable throughout the race, and eventually took the title.

Andalucía Bike Race is a team competition (in pairs), in which both members have to ride together. Teams are split into four categories: Elite Men (two men aged more than 19 years old), Elite Women (two women aged more than 19 years old), Mixed (man and woman aged more than 19 years old) and Masters (two men aged 30 years or older).

With more than 17,000€ of prize money for the Elite Men and Womens categories.

The six-day race took the following basic structure, with one urban day and five marathon days.

  • Stages One and Two

On 26 February, a short urban pre-stage through the city of Córdoba, followed by two stages (27-28 February) which both started and finished in Cordoba city.

These first two stages included sections in the surrounding countryside. Two of these were held in the forests of the Sierra Morena, outside Córdoba.

  • Stage Three
The third stage (29 February) started and finished at Priego de Córdoba.


  • Stages Four and Five

The last two stages took place in Jaén, a more mountainous area surrounded by endless olive groves.

For the participants, the 2012 Andalucía Bike Race offered a wide range of race services: accommodation in four-star hotels, free massage service, physiotherapists, airport shuttles, transfers between stages, photographic packs, DVD, bike wash, mechanics, and race food zones, along with personalized supplies with the new Techbox.

Andalucía Bike Race scored in the UCI (Union Cycliste Internationale) ranking with a XCS S2 status, becoming one of only 12 such mountain bike stage races in the world, and the only one in Spain with this distinction.

The UCI ranking is used to determine eligibility for major events such as the Olympic Games. For many mountain bikers, the Andalucía Bike Race was the essential step in taking them to the London 2012 Olympics, as this race awarded cross country UCI points to the first 25 teams.

For the non-professional riders, the Andalucía Bike Race offered the opportunity to compete with some of the best athletes in the world.

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