You might not have heard of it, but Ironbike has to be one of the ultimate mountain bike challenges.

Over 8 days, athletes will compete in a prologue and 7 stages across the Italian Alps. The 7 stages will cover over 700km and climb over 22,000 meters vertical. The route is a closely guarded secret, only being released to racers on the 1st morning. Ironbike is known for throwing up surprise challenges along the way, so racers not only have to be super fit, they have to be pretty handy on a bike too.

This year Matt Page, UK and European 24hr mountain bike champion is competing – his first mountain bike stage race. With only a 50% finish rate, Matt, who is sponsored by Wiggle, is aiming for a finish, and will be using Torq Energy products whilst on his Rocky Mountain Element.

I am really excited to be doing my first stage race and I thought I’d go for the hardest one I could
find. Not many people in the UK have heard of Ironbike, but everyone who has entered it seems to
agree that it is the biggest challenge they have done. I simply want to finish the event, as I have no
idea of what to expect.

Matt says I am really excited to be doing my first stage race and I thought I’d go for the hardest one I could find. Not many people in the UK have heard of Ironbike, but everyone who has entered it seems to agree that it is the biggest challenge they have done. I simply want to finish the event, as I have no idea of what to expect.

We’ll be following Matt during his race, as can you, by following his Twitter feed – @mattpage24. After the event we’ll be back in touch with him to get a full report about the race.

Ironbike – ‘The worlds hardest mountain bike raid’ runs from 23 – 30 July 2011. Find out more at http://www.ironbike.it/