When two passionate and united mountainbikers find eachother on the trails, only great memories can be made. Vojo journalist Jeffrey Goethals and Jasper Lefevre from Bikehigh went on an adventure to the south of Spain, to race the Andalucia Bike Race 2022 together.
The twelfth edition of the Andalucía Bike Race by GARMIN took place from 21 to 26 February 2022 and is part of the prestigious calendar of the UCI MTB Marathon Series. With the first three stages being raced in the province of Jaén and the last three in the province of Córdoba, starting in Jaén city and finishing in Córdoba city. Martin Stosek and current world champion, Andreas Seewald, were crowned winners of the 358km race.
STAGE 1. 61.70 km & 2.729 m+ | Monday 21st February 2022
The first stage of the race, also known as the ‘Flash Stage’, covers a 61.7km track across Jaén. On this route, racers had to concquer the mytical climb to “El Pincho”, a peak that hadn’t been scaled in 2021’s eleventh edition, only making the route more demanding.
STAGE 2. 64.09 km & 2.316 m+ | Tuesday 22nd February 2022
As in the first stage, the Olivo Arena hosted both the start and finish, however, the stage was totally different. The start took of to Mancha Real, through an impressive sea of olive trees in a very fast and leg-breaking area that stretched the racing group. Followed by a climbing trail towards Sierra Mágina to connect with the village of Pegalajar, the most technical part of the stage. And closing the stage with a singletrack of extreme beauty to reach La Guardia de Jaén to the finish line.
STAGE 3. 69.79 km & 1.897 m+ | Wednesday 23 February 2022
Halfway point of the race and after two thrilling stages through Jaén and its surroundings,the race continued to Andújar to experience a stage that year after year has taken the breath away from the hundreds of participants who have taken part in it. Los Caracolillos -once again- has put the riders' technique to the test with a fast and demanding descent to reach the hermitage of San Ginés and once again put technique at the service of a spectacular descent such as La Bajada de los Caballos. A descent with a lot of flow and that offers the possibility of managing different routes.
STAGE 4. 30.6 km & 899 m+ | Thursday 24 February 2022
Undoubtedly, this stage was one of the great novelties of this edition and one of the key moments. A 30 kilometre time trial in Villafranca de Córdoba, starting and finishing at the fairgrounds.A stage with a high XC component, with a very fast circuit and a rollercoaster of trails.
SKODA SUPER STAGE. 80.47 km & 1.929 m+ | Friday, February 25th 2022
The Fifth stage covers more than 80 kilometers of track, the longest route on the race: the Queen Stage. The start -in the direction of La Canchuela- throwed the riders a mixture of narrow path and fast track next to the downhill trail of ‘La Torre de las Siete Esquinas’, to look for the green zone, will pass through El Patriarca and face the famous climb of El Reventón. Followed by the moment to face the climb through Conejera to reach Cerro Muriano and another key point: the railway track, which also had a great novelty in a tunnel. After a technical descent through Los Escalones, Asomadilla Park the finish line awaited.
OAKLEY FINISHER STAGE. 43.35 km & 1.007 m+ | Saturday 26th February 2022
Despite being the same starting point as the fifth stage, from Carril de los Toros street in Córdoba, the start of the sixth and Oakley Finisher stage was different, heading towards Trasierra along the technical and demanding section of Arroyo de la Gitana, to finish at the Trasierra petrol station and thus give way to a real MTB amusement park. A short but intense stage in which there was no time to catch the breath.
Jasper successfully crossed the finish line of a multi-day MTB race for the 20th time. Jeffry himself rediscovered his talent as a marathon rider and above all, they had a great time along the way! As a team they have never really talked about results, but thanks to their experience, teamwork and solid condition they have managed to get a top 10 at the Masters 30 and a top 100 at the Scratch in an international competition where the best of the world competed. And on their way back they already made plans for the next trip… Team Vojo x Bikehigh will strike again!