With Berlin Bike Week just a few days away, we had a chance to talk to one of Strava’s European development team who is overseeing a unique event at the end of next week. They’ve laid out a 4km individual time trial course up one runway and back the second at Berlin’s retired Tempelhof Airfield, and will be set up on Saturday to help with anyone interested in contesting the race, or to join for some coffee and spectating.
Space is limited to about 350 competitors, so slide past the break to find out more and give it a shot…
Berlin Bicycle Week organizers got in touch with Strava and worked together to create the first opportunity in continental Europe where riders can compete in person for those coveted KOMs and QOMs. Tempelhof was singled out as a hotbed of amateur competition, already having more than 10 highly-contested cycling segments; some with more than 11,000 attempts, full airfield loops, and runway sprints averaging 60km/h. The airport, which served as the single connection to the West during the Berlin Airlift after the end of WWII, closed down in 2008, and has since been turned into a city park popular with cyclists for its long uninterrupted paths.
The event will be jointly run with participants’ GPS tracks uploaded to Strava on-site and timing chips to sort out the exact order. Strava will provide live-tracking leaderboards on a special King of the Airfield Challenge page so the fastest can win the envy of their peers, event-specific KOAs and QOAs, and offers digital trophies for all who give it a go. A competition entry fee also gets you into the weekend’s international lifestyle bike show Berliner Fahrradschau, which we will be digging through for gems next week.
The event also coincides with an attempt by ultra endurance racer Christoph Strasser, and winner of the last 2 RAAMs, to break the record for longest distance cycled on a road circuit within a 24 hour period. His goal is 900km (560mi) with an average speed of 37.5km/h (23.3mph) without stopping! We’re hoping to feature the bike he is using for the attempt, so keep a look out after next week’s show.
If you will be in Berlin sign up, come out, and try your legs on the Strava pop-up challenge from ~10am, plus see if you can keep up with Strasser who will have already been riding for 18 hours at that point.