200 teams, made up of 400 riders from 34 countries around the world, began a quest to Conquer the Rocks of the 4Islands MTB Croatia, on Tuesday 18 April.
Between the start and the finish line lay 291 kilometres of racing and 6 150 metres of climbing on Krk, Rab, Cres and Lošinj.
While all 400 riders were racing for their own reasons, be it to win, to have fun, to celebrate a lifegoal or tick off a bucket list item, there were 43 riders who were racing for something more than the finisher medal. They were chasing down their spot in the Epic Legend Hall of Fame.
An Epic Legend is a special kind of rider. They’re dedicated. They can suffer. They can take setbacks in their stride and forge on, no matter the conditions. They’re tough. They’ve tackled The Untamed African MTB Race, the Absa Cape Epic in Africa, they’ve completed The Pioneer in New Zealand, they’ve conquered Graubünden’s precipitous Alps, and now they’ve conquered Croatia’s rocks!
These riders have earned their spot alongside their fellow Epic Legends:
Edward Wimmer IV
Enrique Morcillo Vergara
Miquel Angel Barcelo Ramirez
Ahmet Sarper Sesli
Antonio Vallcaneras Bonet
After five days of racing across Krk, Rab, Cres and Lošinj, Epic Legend medals were handed over in a celebration of dedication to mountain biking and to the Epic Series. Some recipients of the famed medals were too exhausted for words, while others couldn’t contain their excitement at having earned their status us Epic Legends. Here’s what a selection of the Epic Legends had to say about their achievement.
Bart – “I am incredibly satisfied and super tired. But mostly proud!”
Wouter – “When we started the 2019 Absa Cape Epic we didn’t know each other at all and we thought that would be a one in a lifetime experience… but we were wrong! Then we did the Swiss Epic and now here we are as Epic Legends after doing the 4Islands. Now I want to do even more! The trails, the events, everything is just amazing. I’m so happy that we have done this together and built up this great friendship.”
Bart – “You experience so many highs and lows racing mountain bikes. Good days, good moments, bad days and bad moments. It’s so important to have a strong partnership to get through it all. Wouter and I have done all the Epic Series events together and we’ve built up a great friendship. We’ve conquered as one!”
“I feel fantastic and so proud of becoming Epic Legends! Every Epic Series event is a huge challenge, but you get to discover the world, meet you new people and strengthen the relationship you have with your race partner. Angelo and I have done every Epic Legend race together and we have worked perfectly together. When we needed to go fast, we went fast, when we needed to go slow, we went slow, and that’s what it is all about, overcoming challenges together on our bikes!”
“I am happy. Very happy because I conquered the rocks of Croatia with my friend Antonio [Ortiz] and I now have this Epic Legend medal; I have many, many, many medals at home but this one is special to me. The Epic Series philosophy is more than just number plates and racing; it’s about sharing experience, good and bad, it’s about travel and sharing trails with friends and new people, it’s about mountain biking and the people who do it! I think all riders who have become Epic Legends have shown they are strong and tough, I’d even say they are pistachio guys! When you finish the race alongside your friend, the feeling is incomparable! I love biking, especially now that I am a pensionista as I can just enjoy all of this without worrying about going so fast that I can't see the amazing scenery."
“Oh man, I feel great! I am a little lost for words, which isn’t normal for me, but it’s been quite the epic journey… my friend, partner, sherpa, James, has guided me through this entire adventure. He was the first Epic Legend in the Americas and he has made sure that there is now another as he’s helped me through everything and it’s been one helluva ride. Many highs, many lows, and these events are the best I have ever participated in with the best people and the best attitudes towards mountain biking. I have made many friends along the way and now the most important thing for me to do is to update my email signature to ‘Edward Wimmer – Epic Legend.’”
Tag(s): 4Islands MTB Croatia