The WOW Cyclothon is the Ultimate Cycling Race in Iceland

The WOW Cyclothon is a cycle race that was held for the first time around Midsummer’s Day 2012 – the only race of its kind in Iceland. The planning and execution of the first event went better than ever expected and now we are gearing up to do it all over again. The WOW Cyclothon starts on June 19th and ends on June 22nd. During this time the contestants will cycle some 1482KM around the whole of Iceland. This means weather of all sorts and lot of hills, twists and turns!

Iceland Travel
The WOW Cyclothon is an epic cycling race around Iceland.
The WOW Cyclothon is an epic cycling race around Iceland.

There are big plans for the 2013 event
The plan is to make this year’s event even bigger and better that the last and this year there is strong interest from non-Icelandic teams. The race is organised as a huge relay all around Iceland, each team with one support vehicle. Each Category-A team is made up of four cyclists and two drivers.

The WOW Cyclothone is not for the feint of heart.
The WOW Cyclothone is not for the feint of heart.

More flexible rules and more fun!
The 2013 race comes with various improvements from last year. The most important change is the new Category-B, which allows practically anybody to take part in the competition. Category-B has much more flexible rules and allows for as many as ten cyclists on the same team, working together to get the team home within the strict time deadline: the whole ring road around the island in under 72 hours (it is worth bearing in mind that the winning team in 2012 was on the road for around 40 hours and the last team to finish took 56 hours). 13 teams participated in 2012 and now already 24 teams have announced their participation.

On the way you can enjoy the Icelandic landscape. Provided that the weather is good!
On the way you can enjoy the Icelandic landscape. Provided that the weather is good!

The 2012 was a fight to the finish!
When the teams from last year were planning and strategizing their race, some teams were planning to work together and cycling in a chain the whole way. These teams were The WOW Women (WW), the garage guys (GG), The Rackets (R) and Happy Saddles (HS). These teams were exercising together before the race, meeting to plan the race etc.

When the race started there was a lot of action and many teams were dropped in the first 10 minutes, among them were HS and there was a debate weather the other teams should wait for them or not, it was decided not to wait, so the backstabbing started right away. The other 3 teams held their plan a cycled together. After around 200 km., they met up with Team Focus (F) and they joined the group. This group then cycled together most of the way. But when there was around 200 km. to finish WW, GG and F decided to drop the R team. There were a lot of phone calls planning what to do in the last km. of the race, but the WW did not want to betray the GG team because, that was their closest ally. They did though have a plan B if the GG were to betray them. Between Hella and Selfoss the WW had to launch plan B, because the GG had made a new ally with the F team (witch was not even part of the original alliance). This really pissed off the WW team and they decided to put all their powers in winning the GG. The two teams managed to loose the WW, but when there was a few miles left the WW managed to reach the GG team and left them in the dust. The WW won the gold in women’s part of the competition and were in 6th place over all, and the GG team were 6 minutes behind them to cross the finish line!

 

In the WOW Cyclothon all cyclists race hard until the end.
In the WOW Cyclothon all cyclists race hard until the end.

All for a good cause
The whole event is, naturally, in aid of a good cause and ISK 3,798,820 was collected through the race’s donations website last year. The entirety of that amount went directly to Save the Children Iceland and their “Children’s Movement and Physical Wellbeing” project.

Winners at the finish line!
Winners at the finish line!

How to register for the the WOW Cyclothon head to the registration page of WOW Cyclothon website.

Words: Jórunn Jónsdóttir

Photos: WOW Cyclothon

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The WOW Cyclothon is the Ultimate Cycling Race in Iceland

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