The faint-hearted need not apply for the Romanian hard enduro event – here’s why.
Red Bull Romaniacs is known as the toughest Hard Enduro event in the world – and for good reason too. Situated in the heart of the Carpathian Mountains in Sibiu, Romania, the five-day race pits the world’s best hard enduro racers against some of the harshest terrain they’ll face in their careers. Finishing this race is no mean feat. Here’s five reasons why…
1. The prologue
Before you’re even allowed to venture into the mountains, first you have to master the Sibiu City Prologue. The prologue race features a mind-bending array of crazy wooden obstacles, tyre pits and seesaws in the heart of the city. And with the Red Bull Romaniacs’ competitors all eager to crack the throttle early doors, it’s a magnet for chaos and carnage.
2. Early starts and long days
The days are long and nights are short at Romaniacs. With a 6am wake-up call each morning, followed by an average of six or seven hours in the saddle, plus some post-race bike prep to get your machine ready for the next day, there’s not a lot of time left for sleeping. Fatigue quickly sets in, and only the fighting fit will reach the finish line after battling their way through four days of the torturous Romanian terrain.
To finish first, first you must find your way to the finish. Navigation plays a key part at Red Bull Romaniacs, with GPS systems used to guide competitors through each day of racing. Although the course is amply marked with tape and arrows, GPS is still used as a safety backup. And it’s a backup that Jonny Walker nearly had to do without in 2013, when the Brit spent part of the first day scrabbling around in the Romanian mud looking for his GPS system after it came off the bike when he crashed.
4. The weather
When it rains, it pours in Romania, and when the sun shines it’s blisteringly hot. The weather in Romania can be every bit as extreme as the race. Unfortunately this year hasn’t been a kind Romanian summer and the forecast is for more unsettled weather. Red Bull Romaniacs 2014could favour the mud warriors!
5. The after party
So you’ve mastered the prologue, beaten the mountain and reached the finish of the world’s toughest hard enduro. It’s time to take on the infamous Red Bull Romaniacs After Party. With the race done and dusted, all of the battle-scarred competitors let loose. From drinking games to burnout competitions, anything goes. It’s a final test of stamina for the competitors to get through!
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