Last weekend an Antenore headed to Taiwan to take part in the epic Taiwan KOM Challenge 2017: a 105km race which takes cyclists from sea level to 3275m of altitude with many steep climbs along the natural beauties of Taiwan starting from the city of Hualien.
This year it was great honor for the organization to host so many world class cyclists including Cadel Evans and Vincenzo Nibali who have previously competed in the Giro d’Italia, Tour de Spain and Tour de France.
The cyclists must complete the course in less than 6.5 hours(counted from the flying start). After turning left off of Taroko Gorge Bridge and as riders enter into the Taroko Gorge, 90km of the course has an average climb of 7%. After completing 95kms, riders will be greeted with the most grueling part of the course, the last 10kms with climbs ranging from 17% to 27%.
Out of all the cycling races in the world, it is very unique to find this type of ascent at such a high altitude. The Taiwan KOM Challenge will bring riders into the most beautiful wonders of Mother Nature as they ride higher and higher into the mountains. The Taiwan KOM Challenge has entered into its sixth year and is included, along with the Haute Route Alps Mountain Challenge, amongst the world’s top 10 most difficult cycling races by French magazine “Le Cycle”.
Taiwan KOM Challenge 2017 Men’s Top 5:
Vincenzo Nibali ITA 03:19:54
Oscar Pujol ESP 03:21:25
John Ebsen DEN 03:24:21
Cameron Piper USA 03:24:44
Edmund Bradbury GBR 03:24:55
Taiwan KOM Challenge 2017 Women’s Top 5:
Emma Jane Pooley GBR 03:52:25
Hayley Simmonds GBR 04:08:58
Emily Grace Collinge GBR 04:12:24
Claudia Lichtenberg GER 04:24:26
Helen Jackson GBR 04:25:53
Photograpy: Caley Fretz