Hercules MTB Himachal Edition 6.0 All Set To Test Endurance Levels From 23rd October, 2010 From Shimla

Hercules MTB Himachal 2010

Hercules MTB Himachal 2010

India’s premier Mountain Terrain Biking event Hercules MTB Himachal is all set to bring together biking enthusiasts from across the globe. The all new 6th edition of MTB comes StrongerBigger and more Challenging with the new found spectacular route in the western Himalayas saluting the indomitable human and sport spirit. More than 80 cyclists have come together to participate in this edition of the Hercules MTB Himachal 2010 which will flag-off from Shimla on World Tourism Day  October 23rd, 2010 from the historic Ridge by Dr. Rajiv Bindal, the Health Minister of Himachal Pradesh.

8 days of splendid adventure, racing through a staggering 500kms and gaining an aggregated elevation of over 14000 mts is a real test of strength and determination.  11 foreign nationals have also registered for the sport affirming the rise in its popularity across the country and the world. This year has been a watershed year for the sport in India as we have seen a phenomenal growth of Indian participation in the event which has been the highest ever.

After taking off from Shimla, the participants will go through narrow forest pathways in the tough mountain ranges of Shimla , Mandi and Kullu districts. The fourth day will be the most gruelling when the bikers will have to cover 90 km distance from Kulu Sarhan to Bahu. The riders will go through more stages of time trials and much tougher hike-and- bike sections this time around.

The rally is supported by the Department of Tourism & Civil Aviation Himachal Pradesh and is showcased under its Unforgettable Himachal and Incredible India campaigns. “The government of Himachal Pradesh is committed in making the state a paradise for tourism, adventure sports and allied tourism activities .We have been encouraging activities like paragliding, white water rafting ,skiing and mountain biking .We have been pioneers in this initiative of mountain biking and it is now that other states are following suit. Mountain biking has great potential of green tourism development that the state has to offer.” says Mrs. Manisha Nanda, Principal Secretary, Himachal Pradesh Tourism.

The Tourism department has been particularly aggressive this year in promoting tourism through host of tourism initiatives like Har ghar ki kahani, Har gaon ki kahani, Home stay scheme which have been very well received by the tourist. According to Dr. Arun Sharma, Director Tourism, mountain biking being a very eco friendly and soft adventure activity has grown tremendously received over the years and the Tourism department will continue to support these kinds of activities to bring Himachal to the world map of eco friendly adventure activities.

The rally has been supported extensively by TI cycles ever since its inception in 2005. According to Dr Raghuram, President,  TI Cycles of India, “TI Cycles of India is happy to bring to you India’s biggest Mountain Biking event the Hercules Himachal MTB 2010 .The Hercules Himachal MTB is an exciting format which we have been involved with for the last 6 years where we have seen serious cycling enthusiasts come from around the world to enjoy mountain biking.

We have had an overwhelming response to our editions in the last 6 years where people from across countries have come and participated and enjoyed the beautiful environs of the Himalayas. This shows that there is a desire to experience the joy of cycling in the hills of the Himalayas and they have demonstrated their enthusiasm for experiencing the outdoors on a cycle.

The Murugappa group takes an active role in promoting sports in India. We have been sponsoring The Murugappa Gold cup Hockey tournament in Chennai and the Chennai Tennis Open which attracts the best players from around the world. Now we are promoting cycling and encouraging sportspersons involved in cycling through the cyclothons in Delhi, Bangalore and Mumbai. Our commitment to the Hercules Himachal MTB over the last 6 years has seen the event growing in leaps and bounds and providing an opportunity to the serious cyclist to enjoy the mountains of the Himalayas.

We believe with support from the government we can develop world class sportsmen and sports women to successfully represent India in International cycling events.”

Mohit Sood President Himalayan Adventure Sports and Tourism Promotion Association (HASTPA) asserted MTB Himachal to be the third toughest mountain biking event in the world, after the Trans-Alps Challenge (Europe) and Trans Rockies (Canada) “ We would ensure its eligibility for recognition by the United Cyclae Internationale (UCI) after this year’s event”, he confirmed.

The rally is giving out a strong message against pollution caused by non-biodegradable waste. This year HASTPA has tied up with NEIV (Needful Initiative for Environment), an NGO for the Greentrail initiative with the aim to spread awareness about sustainable eco-friendly approach.

Volunteers of the organisation will move along the rally in vehicles and clean the litter in the areas the rally will be passing through with the help of local people. They will distribute education material in various schools and colleges covered in the route and also hold interactive sessions with local communities.

A photography competition namely MTB-Photoquest is also being held along with the rally. The winners of the competition will get a chance to showcase their work in the December issue of the renowned magazine Lonely Planet. Most of the selected photographers hail from Delhi, Mumbai and Punjab.

HASTPA remains committed to promote the Himalayan region for tourism and adventure activities. This initiative of ours has grown tremendously over the years and is now being replicated by other states and organisations. We take this opportunity to thank all sponsors, participants, mentors, media and volunteers for making this happen. We request all the tourism stake holders to come together to promote this very environment friendly activity which has tremendous potential as can be seen in other countries. Mountain Biking can contribute a lot to the local tourism based economy and offer the local communities to setup sustaining tourism endeavours.

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