Transpyrenees 2020 Film
2020 was a tough year for race organisers and riders alike, with many events postponed or cancelled due to Covid 19. The Transibérica team were one of the few European race organisers able to successfully run their entire calendar and have released a film by @PeteroftheSpoon documenting the reality of ultra-racing during a pandemic, following the racers at Transpyrenees 2020.
“No one had a plan for this. It was an unprecedented situation, so we just tried to do our best. But for sure, the worst part was the uncertainty. We spent our lockdown just making plans and working on alternatives and deadlines…but all our plans changed day by day.”
Making Transibérica’s events Covid-safe meant not only focusing on the safety and impact of the riders but also the suppliers, logistics, the media team and hotels. “So many emails, calls, questions and doubts … luckily everyone involved was really comprehensive and helped us a lot, particularly our sponsors. We have to say big thanks to all of them.”
After months of planning, the team were able to confirm new dates, but it meant organising all of their events (Transpyrenees, Badlands and Transiberica) in a row – a daunting challenge.
Transpyrenees was the first, in August. “The people of Llançà, the village where Transpyrenees starts, made it easy, allowing us to use the sports hall for the briefing. Social distancing could be maintained easily, and we had thermometers, hand sanitiser, gloves and masks… all those things that today are just part of our lives.”
“We gave some instructions and tips to the riders for the event, about the safety measures and legal issues: the people who could be together, where to wear masks (at that time it was mandatory in Spain but not in France). After Transpyrenees, the second Covid wave was starting, so we were really stressed again…but luckily all went well.”
Looking back on all of that stress and hard work, the Transibérica team tell us “the most important part is that we are here, sat in front of a computer speaking about bikes. The pandemic is bringing problems bigger than the stress of organising a race, so we can’t complain at all. We were lucky to enjoy that adventure in spite of everything.”