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  Wadi Bih Adventure Race 7th Jan 2011

The inaugural Wadi Bih Adventure race was held on Friday the seventh of January, starting from the Golden Tulip Hotel in Dibba.

There were two categories of entry :

Approximately thirty five kilometre mountain bike hill climb with height gained of approximately one thousand metres for individuals.
Team event comprising at the same bike section and then approximately ten kilometre hike to the top of the highest peak in the area Jebel Qihwi and then returning to the road head.

A total of 15 teams started the team race and 45 individuals in the mountain bike event.

Congratulations to all who took part and completed the course. The mountains are dramatic, steep quite a contrast to those used to cycling in the flat lands of Dubai and Abu Dhabi

Everybody returned safely, I think , please let me know if you're missing anybody who may still be wondering aimlessly in the mountains! There were only a few minor injuries, on the non race section of the bike , coming down the hill.

We must offer our apologies to participants in that we would not able to arrange a an event T-shirt as a memento of the day. Unfortunately the sponsor we thought was going to be involved did not commit and it was too late to arrange an alternative.

There was a slight hic up at the start for the team race due to the uncertainty of when the police escort would arrive. However after this was resolved the team event got off at about seven thirty .

When the police did arrive for the solo MTB event the they decided to allocate a lead police car and a police car at the rear. However the police car at the front was overtaken by the riders very shortly after the start!

The route follows Wadi Khabb Shamsi and after a short sharp steep asphalt section, to negotiate past the barrage/dam, the gradient is fairly gradual until nearer the top when there are so very steep sections and hairpin bends.

The race entry reflectived the very cosmopolitan nature of the population build up in the UAE with participants from numerous countries and varying ages.

For details of the full results please check the premier marathons www and look for the pdf files ; individuals teams on the event listing

Congratulations to Murt Rampuri on winning the individual race in an amazing time of 1 hour 55 minutes . Also noteworthy was the performance of Adam Marcinwiki who completed the event in approximately the same time but set off early with the team category and was hence not ranked.

The team race was a tougher proposition with the same hill climb but then a difficult trek over very broken terrain with significant height gain and some steep scrambling near the summit, and that was not the finish as the teams then had to descend the mountain to the finish at the road head. Congratulations to Kevin West and David Mutch on winning the event in an amazing time of 5 hours and 6 minutes

This is the first time we held an event of this type and there are a number of learning points. If you have any comments/suggestions/feedback/or even criticism! please let us know and we can consider these when planning the next event. Generally the feedback we have received has been favourable and positive and on this basis we are looking to repeat the event next year.

An event of this nature does not happen without a lot of hard work and conscientious support from different parties and organisations

A big thank you to Elie Jabbour the new manager at the Golden Tulip Hotel in Dibba who had only been in the job a few days. His team laid on a superb ded after the event and were very hospitable.

The marshals on the course at the top of the road at the top of the mountain were from the Absolute Adventure company many thanks to Paul Oliver, Ram, Devan David, Lindy and Sebastien for their input.

Wolfs Bike Shop kindly provided some cycling equipment as prizes for the event - many thanks Wolfi.

On the day Adrian Holman and his two mechanics Rodel and Ariel from Pro-bike were there to help people setting up adjusting bikes both the start and at the top of the course - many thanks guys.

A big thank you to Louise Galbraith who spent a lot of time just prior to the event coordinating late entries by e-mail and helping with the registrations on the day.

We are also hugely indebted to the huge big red pickup truck that Jonathan Inman brought along to take to the top of the road.

Again many thanks to everybody for supporting the event and we look forward to holding it again next winter.


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