The Race

Samarathon is a relatively young MTB event, celebrating its 3rd year in 2017. In its first year it was a 2-stage race. In 2016 we added a time trial-style prologue in Mitzpe Ramon and the Hava singletrack. In the third edition we were hoping to grow into a 4-day event, with a prologue and 3 stages, but as of 9/11 the event goes back to the original format, with a slightly longer prologue in a new area and with upgraded point-to-point stages.

Desert riding is unique and may be very different from your familiar rides. You may face hot weather even in the middle of winter; no trees, vegetation or shade; sandy or loose terrain; unending ascents and super-flowing singletracks with perfect traction, designed and built by riders for riders. This means that Samarathon is aimed at tough and seasoned mountain-bikers who can wrestle with 4 long riding days in harsh desert conditions. Those facing the challenge will get to relax in the wild and awesome Riders’ Village with delicious food, cold drinks, fresh fruit shakes, music and more of the famous hospitality of Samarathon.

The MTB competition will be run at the highest level, with professional timekeeping, meticulous course signing, teams of course-marshals, emergency vehicles, feed zones and media teams.

Samarathon is a MTB marathon race in teams of two riders. Each team has to start together, ride and finish together. Time and result is per team – the race does not include individual results.

In its first years, Samarathon included two heats – Long and Medium. As of 2017 there is only one distance for all racers.

Categories (determined by the birth-year of the younger team-mate):

  • Women
  • Mixed
  • Men (under 39)
  • Masters 40+
  • Grand Masters 50+

To qualify for the finishers’ jerseys each team must ride all the courses from the start of the prologue to the finish of Stage 2 within the cut-Off Times which will be announced in the Rules & Regulations. Each team starts the prologue a minute apart from the previous team and receives a timed result, on which base the staging for tomorrow’s start will be made.
Daily leaders in each category will be announced at the closing ceremony each night.