Highest altitude mountain bike competition kicks offThe 12th edition of Yak Attack, the highest altitude mountain bike competition, kicked off from Besi Sahar of Lamjung on Thursday.
The 12th edition of Yak Attack, the highest altitude mountain bike competition, kicked off from Besi Sahar of Lamjung on Thursday.
In all, 33 international riders—29 male and four female—from 12 countries are competing in the event, the starting point of which falls under one of the globally-acclaimed hiking destinations Annapurna circuit.
Defending champion Cory Wallace of Canada made impressive start securing first position in the stage 1 of the 37km race. He clocked 2 hours 24 minutes before the race concluded at the Manang Lake. The seven-stage event will wrap up after crossing 157-km route at Kalopani, Mustang.
Okesh Bajracharya of Nepal finished second in 2:36 while Buddhi Bahadur ened up in third at 2:39. Five time champion Ajay Pandit Chhetri of Nepal is among the notable riders missing this season as he is involved in managerial duties. The event is organised by Mountain Biking World Wide while Mountain Bike (MTB) Nepal is the co-organiser and event manager.
Pandit Chhetri, who is the director of MTB, said that dissatisfaction among riders on the managerial part forced to give up the competition and take up the role of managing the event. "The bikers were unhappy by the mismanagement last time around. This year’s event was under threat owing to the same reason. So I had to step in to save the race," said Pandit Chhetri adding that people and organisation related with cycling have shouldered the responsibility of management this time.
Riders from Canada, America, Colombia, France, Australia, Italy, Germany, England, Switzerland and South Africa are in fray for the title this time. The event offers $5,000 in total prize money. Besi Sahar Municipality mayor Guman Singh Aryal said such kind of events will contribute in promoting the region as tourism destination.