2024 Newsletter #1 – Schedule, Travel & Accommodation Info

Hello,

We are very excited and eager to see you soon and hope you feel the same about our event :).

June is just around the corner, so we are bringing you some basic info to get you started.

 

1) SCHEDULE (CET)

– 12th of June: 80 km promotional ride in Banja Luka county.
– 13th of June: 90 km promotional ride in Banja Luka county.
– 14th of June: Warmup ride at 11 AM, obligatory event briefing (around 4 PM).
– 15th of June: Start at 5 AM. Detailed starting schedule is to be posted prior to the event start.
– 18th of June: The deadline for successfully completing the course is at 11 PM (12:15 PM for brevet).
– 19th of June: Finishers ceremony and debriefing at 11 AM.

 

2) WAYS TO RIDE

As you know there are several ways to ride the 1200 km B-HARD route, but just to reiterate – they are as follows:
– B-RACE – 1215 km Ultra Race with 90h time limit – basically an individual time trial, no drafting allowed, the rider that completes the route in shortest time is the winner, <84h qualifies for RAAM,
– B-PAIR – 1215 km Ultra Race as above, but for pairs – the pair of riders can draft each other and actually have to stick together at all times and finish together,
– B-1200 – 1215 km LRM-homologated brevet with a 91h 25m time limit, everyone who finishes within a time limit is a “winner” and the riders can draft and ride together within category.

Furthermore, we have got shorter distances available as well:
– B-600 – 620 km BRM-homologated brevet 40h, rules as per above,
– B-400 – 400 km BRM-homologated brevet 27h, rules as per above,
– B-300 – 310 km BRM-homologated brevet 20h, rules as per above,
– B-200 – 200 km BRM-homologated brevet 13h30, rules as per above,
– B-WOMEN – 125 km promotional road ride, reserved solely for women,
– B-TOUR – supported 4-stage ride (~600 km) on the B-HARD route, with transfers and accommodation.

It is possible to change the category until the starting lists are compiled.

 

3) DISCOUNTS

In order to bring you even more value for the money, we have arranged the following discounts so far:
– 25% discount and 30-day free trial on RideWithGPS Premium Subscription – https://ridewithgps.com/
– 20% discount on PACK2RIDE bikepacking equipment – https://pack2ride.com/en-eu
– 15% discount of Tailfin bikepacking equipment – https://www.tailfin.cc/

We will add more deals if and as we negotiate them.

 

4) TRAVEL AND ARRIVAL TO BANJA LUKA

As you might have figured out already, our event is all about giving people a chance to push their boundaries and see/visit lots of beautiful places while doing so. Still, it’s not just a barebone survival kind of a ride. Instead, we put a great deal of effort in making it a real touristic package and providing you with a good amount of support throughout the route in order to make it a more pleasant experience, both for those trying to finish within the time limit and those that will go racing full gas.

That being said, it doesn’t end there but we do our best to help each and every rider get to the start line with the least amount of troubles and money spent and also to have your limited time here enjoyed to the fullest.

Apart from a local SIM card for data and for us to be able to contact you during the event, that you will be provided with upon your arrival, we go as far as helping you get here swiftly to begin with, having several years of hands-on experience already.

Therefore, please let us know when and how exactly you plan to arrive and depart and we will advise if that’s the best option and also help out with organising transfers at best rates.

First of all, you will need a valid travel document. This consists of a national ID card for citizens of EU/Schengen and few other countries, while other nationalities will need to carry a passport (with a visa, if applicable). In both cases, the document needs to have a validity of at least three months at the moment of entry.

For those of you arriving directly to Banja Luka, there’s not much to add. If you’re coming by car, it’s best to arrange parking at the chosen place of accommodation for the duration of your stay. For those arriving by bus, you can take a taxi from the bus station to the city center. For those arriving at BNX Banja Luka airport, there’s normally an airport shuttle bus that transfers you to the city center for about 5 euros or a taxi for about 20-25 euros.

However, it is likely that you might be flying into SJJ Sarajevo or even more likely to ZAG Zagreb or perhaps taking a train to Zagreb. In this case, you need to switch over to a bus to Banja Luka or we can arrange private door-to-door transfers with our crew or with external partners – let us know if you need help with this.

For checking flights, we suggest http://www.skyscanner.net while you can find timetables for buses online as well.

Furthermore, it is not unusual for riders to arrive well in advance to the event in order to train and attend social rides pre-event and stay longer for some cooldown rides and other interesting activities in the region. If you’ve got extra days to spare, they definitely won’t go to waste! 🙂

 

5) ACCOMMODATION IN BANJA LUKA

The start of the event will be held in the main city park and we can suggest a couple of convenient options for accommodation.

The first one is our bike-friendly “race hostel” Hostel Herz (they are avid dot-watchers as well). It is located only 750 m away from the starting point and offers various types of rooms and apartments. The Hostel also offers safekeeping of your luggage and bike bags and vehicles parked in their private parking while you’re away riding. This would also be the best option for people planning to arrive by campervans.

The best way to contact the hostel for a quick response is by Whatsapp/Viber on +38766770610, telling them you are a B-HARD rider and what your exact needs are.

For those wanting a bit more comfort, we can also recommend a 4* Hotel Zepter Palace, sitting right at the start location :). Of course, you are more than welcome to search and arrange accommodation to your own preferences via Booking.com and Airbnb.com and don’t forget to bring earplugs if you’re a light sleeper :).

 

6) SOCIAL MEDIA

You can follow us on these social media platforms:
– Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/bhardultrarace
– Facebook: https://www.facebook.com.com/bhardultarace
– YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/@bhardultrarace
– Strava Club: http://www.strava.com/clubs/563459

We are eager to see you train and inspire others to ride and potentially join the B-HARD family – so please tag us in your posts and stories as @bhardultrarace and we will happily share them.

Also, if you are proud and excited of the fact that you will be riding with us, we have included a couple of images that you can post/share at your leisure – again tag us as @bhardultrarace and https://www.bhardultrarace.com (where applicable).

Coming up in the next newsletter: 2024 Route Details & Riders Roster

Take care and speak soon.