Following races in Kenya and Nepal, the Fabien Barel Invitational series is heading to Cape Verde, an archipelago off the west coast of Africa, in 2011.
Some of the world’s top mountain bikers will take part, including downhill legend Nico Vouilloz, trials guru Hans Rey, World Cup stars Tracy Moseley and Sabrina Jonnier, and all-mountain king Mark Weir.
Also confirmed are pro riders Rowan Sorrell and Sam Peridy, along with two amateurs – Frenchman Samuel Normand and Swiss rider Doro Lindke – who were shortlisted from 450 applicants and won their places at a training camp in October. More competitors will be announced soon.
Urge Cabo Verde takes place from 28 January to 7 February, with most of the racing taking place on two islands: Fogo, an active volcano, and Santo Antao, the mountainous part of the archipelago.
Racing will take place on the island of Fogo, which is dominated by an active volcano
Rowan Sorrell (Orange-Mojo), a former World Cup downhiller who runs Back On Track trail design, will compete on an Orange Alpine 160 with Fox suspension. “I’m really excited about this trip,” he said. “I’m looking forward to learning about the Cape Verde islands and experiencing the madness of the Urge events with some of the world’s best riders.
“All the riders on the trip love mountain biking. I think promoting the sport to new people and new areas is just an extension of our passion for the sport. The Urge events haven’t been well publicised in the UK so far and I hope that this year with Tracy and I on board we’ll be able to create some interest and excitement around the event back in the UK.”
Urge Cabo Verde will raise money for local non-governmental organisations that work with children, particularly in the area of education. “This is an amazing opportunity,” said Sorrell. “To have a way of raising money for worthy causes through what we do is exciting. We’re all privileged to have grown up where we have and the Urge events aim to make a real difference for the hosting countries.”
Rowan Sorrell will fly the flag for Wales and the UK at Urge Cabo Verde