THE GREAT HIMALAYAN ULTRA

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LADAKH CALLING!!

Inspire India brings you the world’s highest Ultracycle Race… With a start point elevation higher than any point on any Ultracycle Race in the world!

The Great Himalayan Ultra Race is the World’s highest Ultracycle race. With three distance options and three categories to choose from, get ready to race on some of the toughest roads in the world! All distance formats start and finish in Leh, Ladakh.

 

The 600km and 900km races can be attempted only by Crew-Supported racers in either a Solo or a Relay Team category. All racers in these categories must have a support vehicle and crew.  Solo is a RAAM Qualifier and racers finishing within the cut-off will qualify for The Race Across America. The Relay team category is RAAM style relay.

 

The 444km race is open to Self-Supported racers only and does not require a crew support. However, this is not RAAM Qualifier.

 

The Races are also on the World Ultra Cycling Association (WUCA) calendar.

Race Details

  • Location – Leh, Ladakh

  • Distance – 444km, 600km, 900km Race

  • Start Date – 26th Aug 2022 (900km), 27th Aug 2022 (600km and 444km) 

  • Elevation Gain – 8,318m (for 444km); 10,347m (for 600km); 14,480, (for 900km)

  • Start Elevation – 3,500m (11,500ft) above sea level

 

Race Schedule

Being a High Altitude Race, all racers, crew members, and officials will be required (mandatory) to report in Leh according to the following schedule. While this is for us to establish that racers get the bare minimum acclimatization, it is highly recommended that racers arrive 14-16 days in advance to ensure that they acclimatize satisfactorily. This is particularly necessary if racers are flying directly into Leh. Racers may choose to reach Srinagar or Manali and drive to Leh in order to have a slower transition to high altitude.

 

Friday 12 August (14 days before start) - Mandatory Reporting for 900 KM Racers for Acclimatisation
Tuesday 16 August (10 days before start) - Mandatory Reporting for 600 and 444 KM Racers for Acclimatisation
Friday 19 August (1 week before start) - Mandatory Reporting for 900 KM Crew for Acclimatisation (same for Officials)
Sunday 21 August (5 days before start) - Mandatory Reporting for 600 and 444 KM Crew for Acclimatisation (same for Officials)

Wednesday 24 August & Thursday 25 August - All Races Inspection 
Friday 26 August - 900km Race Start (Extreme version)
Saturday 27 August - 600km Race (Ultra version) and 444km Self Supported Start
Sunday 28 August evening to Monday 29 August early morning - All Races Finish

Monday 29 August noon onwards - Awards Ceremony and Lunch Party

 

444km Solo Self Supported

The self-supported race is a new racing format at Inspire India. With no support crew and vehicle requirement, and minimal support from the organisers, enjoy the serene Himalayas on your own steam! With 2 stages to race at, racers get a rest break at Kargil to recharge. 

Race Route

Stage 1: 222km Leh to Kargil

The Race route follows NH1 through spectacular Himalayan mountain landscapes of Ladakh and Kargil regions, in Jammu and Kashmir. Starting in Leh, the route goes towards Srinagar on NH1. After the Gurudwara Pathar Sahib the route descends past Magnetic hill and the point where the Zanskar joins in and changes the colour of the Indus at a dramatic confluence that is clearly visible on the left from the route. 

The road flattens at Nimmoo where you may be able to procure some items, till Basgo where the third climb of about 8 km starts. The route descends again to Saspol to follow along the Indus for about 40 km. Saspol has plenty of shops and supplies are available. A couple of kilometres after Khalsi the road crosses the Indus, which is on the right for a short while. Then the route turns away from the age old path of the Indus and starts the long climb of 27km towards Fotu La- the highest point on the race route. After racing past the breath-taking moonland the road goes past Lamayuru monastery where refreshments and few supplies are available.

The route ascends till Fotu La through a barren and exposed landscape that continues, descending with the valley on the left of the road. Caution is advised on this stretch as there is a possibility of a strong cross wind. The road conditions also are not perfect, racers may want to consider switching to an MTB or hybrid bikes. A 7 km climb is followed by an even longer descend to Kargil which is the lowest point on the race route. Stage 1 ends here. 

Stage 2: 222km Kargil to Leh:

After a night's stay in Kargil, the racers are again flagged off on their second stage. Stage 2 of the race is an inverted replica of Stage 1. Immediately after leaving Kargil, racers now face the longest ascent from the lowest point in Kargil (2600m) to Fotu La top (4100m). The steep descent past Lamayuru monsatery followed by the spectacular moonland are passed by rather quickly on the way back. The route eventually comes back to join the Indus river and soon after approached Khalsi and Saspol villages where pleany of supplies are available. The route then goes past Nimmoo and then climbs gently towards Pathar Sahib. The home stretch to Leh graces the route as racers go through the city hustle. Cheering locals welcome the racers to the Finish Line at Rover's Den Hostel. Stage 2 ends here. 

Metrics

Distance: 444km

Elevation Gain: 8,313m
Highest Point:  Fotu La Pass at 4108m above sea level  
Tentative Route: https://ridewithgps.com/routes/37259119

Categories and Timings

The 444km race is open only to Self Supported Racers in the following categories:

Category Code
Category
Stage 1 Cut Off
Stage 2 Cut Off
F
Women 18-49
15:00:00
15:00:00
G
Men 50+
15:00:00
15:00:00
H
Men 18-49
15:00:00
15:00:00
E
Women 50+
15:00:00
15:00:00
 

600km Ultra 

The 600km Ultra race is open to crew supported racers. Racers in any category at the 600km Ultra race need a minimum of 3 crew members and one support vehicle to participate. Given the high altitude of the race, there will be a mandatory 3 hour night halt in Kargil. Read route and timing details for more information. 

Race Route

The Race route follows NH1 through spectacular Himalayan mountain landscapes of Ladakh and Kargil regions, in Jammu and Kashmir. Starting in Leh, the route first geos south for a small taste of green ladakhi valleys along the brilliant turquoise of the Indus (Sindhu) river, before turning around at Thiksey Monastery on your left. Racers will face their first climb to go past Leh as the route goes towards Srinagar on NH1. After the Gurudwara Pathar Sahib the route descends past Magnetic hill and the point where the Zanskar joins in and changes the colour of the Indus at a dramatic confluence that is clearly visible on the left from the route. 

The road flattens at Nimmoo where you may be able to procure some items, till Basgo where the third climb of about 8 km starts. The route descends again to Saspol to follow along the Indus for about 40 km. Saspol has plenty of shops and supplies are available. A couple of kilometres after Khalsi the road crosses the Indus, which is on the right for a short while. Then the route turns away from the age old path of the Indus and starts the long climb of 27km towards Fotu La- the highest point on the race route. After racing past the breath-taking moonland the road goes past Lamayuru monastery where refreshments and few supplies are available.

The route ascends till Fotu La through a barren and exposed landscape that continues, descending with the valley on the left of the road. Caution is advised on this stretch as there is a possibility of a strong cross wind. The road conditions also are not perfect, racers may want to consider switching to an MTB or hybrid bikes. A 7 km climb is followed by an even longer descend to Kargil which is the lowest point on the race route. The race continues towards Srinigar on NH1 while following the Suru river or it’s tributaries through narrow valleys flanked by green meadows. The route goes past Kargil War Memorial to reach Dras, the second coldest inhabited place on earth and the turn point for the race. This is truly a race of superlatives! After turning around at Dras, the route comes back to Kargil  where a 3 hour mandatory night halt is arranged. 

After a halt in Kargil, racers now face the longest ascent from the lowest point in Kargil (2600m) to Fotu La top (4100m). The steep descent past Lamayuru monsatery followed by the spectacular moonland are passed by rather quickly on the way back. The route eventually comes back to join the Indus river and soon after approached Khalsi and Saspol villages where pleany of supplies are available. The route then goes past Nimmoo and then climbs gently towards Pathar Sahib. The home stretch to Leh graces the route as racers go through the city hustle. Cheering locals welcome the racers to the Finish Line at Rover's Den Hostel. 

Metrics

Distance: 600km

Elevation Gain: 10,338m
Highest Point:  Fotu La Pass at 4108m above sea level  
Tentative Route: https://ridewithgps.com/routes/27274410

Categories and Timings:

Solo RAAM Qualifier

SOLO is just that…. Solo! Solo racers ride the entire distance, while their crew provides them with full support. Solo Racers at The Great Himalayan Ultra Qualify for The Race Across America if they finish within the RQ timings. Categories and Timings are based on Racing Age and Gender. (Racing Age is the age each Racer will turn during the calendar year of the race i.e. year of race minus birth year). The Ride option is for riders attempting to ride The Great Himalayan Ultra solo, who do not complete within RQ timings. All riders who complete the route within their time limit of 48hrs will receive the Finisher’s Award. 

Category Code
Category
RQ Cut Off (Hrs)
A
RQ Women 50+
44:00:00
B
RQ Women 18-49
42:00:00
C
RQ Men 50+
42:00:00
D
RQ Men 18-49
40:00:00

RAAM Style Relay

The team event is a relay, not a peloton of 2, 3 or 4 members. Team members take turns riding, while other/s rest in the support vehicle and move up the road. Teams have the freedom to decide how often you swap riders, how long each member rides and how much distance each covers. As a collective, the team must ride the entire route without exception. Categories and Timings  are based on Team Age and Gender. Team Age is the average racing age of all Team members (total number of years divided by 2,3 or 4 depending on team size). Racing Age is the age each Racer will turn during the calendar year of the race (year of race minus birth year).

Category Code
Category
Cut Off (Hrs)
1
All Women 50+
42:00:00
2
All Women 35-49
41:00:00
3
All Women 18-34
40:00:00
4
Mixed 50+
40:00:00
5
All Men 50+
40:00:00
6
Mixed 35-49
39:00:00
7
All Men 35-49
39:00:00
8
Mixed 18-34
38:00:00
9
All Men 18-34
38:00:00
 

900km Extreme

The 900km Ultra race is open to crew supported racers. Racers in any category at the 900km Ultra race need a minimum of 4 crew members and one support vehicle to participate. Given the high altitude of the race, the race is organised in a unique format. Racers will be flagged off before the 600km Ultra race and will get 21 hours to finish the first 300km of the route. Then after a minimum 3  hour halt, racers will be flagged off again alongside the 600km race. Just like the 600km racers, there will be a second mandatory 3 hour night halt in Kargil. Read route and timing details for more information.

Route

The route first heads south on NH1 towards Manali going over the gorgeous Ladakhi valleys. Passing the towns of Upshi and Pang, the route takes racers to the highest mountain pass in the race- Tanglang La at 5328m above sea level. After the long and strenuous climb over Tanglang La, the route climbs down to Morey Plains. At Morey Plains, the route turns around to come back towards Leh climbing the Langlang La second time. The route from Leh to Morey Plains and back to Leh is 340km and racers get 21 hours to complete this section. After reaching Leh, racers get a night's halt in Leh and are flagged off again alongside the 600km and 444km racers. 

The Race route then follows NH1 through spectacular Himalayan mountain landscapes of Ladakh and Kargil regions, in Jammu and Kashmir. After the Gurudwara Pathar Sahib the route descends past Magnetic hill and the point where the Zanskar joins in and changes the colour of the Indus at a dramatic confluence that is clearly visible on the left from the route. 

The road flattens at Nimmoo where you may be able to procure some items, till Basgo where the third climb of about 8 km starts. The route descends again to Saspol to follow along the Indus for about 40 km. Saspol has plenty of shops and supplies are available. A couple of kilometres after Khalsi the road crosses the Indus, which is on the right for a short while. Then the route turns away from the age old path of the Indus and starts the long climb of 27km towards Fotu La- the highest point on the race route. After racing past the breath-taking moonland the road goes past Lamayuru monastery where refreshments and few supplies are available.

The route ascends till Fotu La through a barren and exposed landscape that continues, descending with the valley on the left of the road. Caution is advised on this stretch as there is a possibility of a strong cross wind. The road conditions also are not perfect, racers may want to consider switching to an MTB or hybrid bikes. A 7 km climb is followed by an even longer descend to Kargil which is the lowest point on the race route. The race continues towards Srinigar on NH1 while following the Suru river or it’s tributaries through narrow valleys flanked by green meadows. The route goes past Kargil War Memorial to reach Dras, the second coldest inhabited place on earth and the turn point for the race. This is truly a race of superlatives! After turning around at Dras, the route comes back to Kargil  where a 3 hour mandatory night halt is arranged. 

After a halt in Kargil, racers now face the longest ascent from the lowest point in Kargil (2600m) to Fotu La top (4100m). The steep descent past Lamayuru monsatery followed by the spectacular moonland are passed by rather quickly on the way back. The route eventually comes back to join the Indus river and soon after approached Khalsi and Saspol villages where pleany of supplies are available. The route then goes past Nimmoo and then climbs gently towards Pathar Sahib. The home stretch to Leh graces the route as racers go through the city hustle. Cheering locals welcome the racers to the Finish Line at Rover's Den Hostel. 

Metrics

Distance: 900km

Elevation Gain: 14,480m
Highest Point:  Tanglang La Pass at 5328m above sea level
Tentative Route: https://ridewithgps.com/routes/29460767

Categories and Timings:

Solo 

SOLO is just that…. Solo! Solo racers ride the entire distance, while their crew provides them with full support. Categories and Timings are based on Racing Age and Gender. (Racing Age is the age each Racer will turn during the calendar year of the race i.e. year of race minus birth year). The Ride option is for riders attempting to ride The Great Himalayan Extreme solo. All riders who complete the route within the pre-defined time limit will receive the Finisher’s Award. Lastly, riders who wish to give up the race at any point within the first 300km of the race have an opportunity to attempt the Great Himalayan Ultra 600km race afresh immediately the next day. 

Timings under approval! Visit again later for detailed categories and timings

RAAM Style Relay

The team event is a relay, not a peloton of 2, 3 or 4 members. Team members take turns riding, while other/s rest in the support vehicle and move up the road. Teams have the freedom to decide how often you swap riders, how long each member rides and how much distance each covers. As a collective, the team must ride the entire route without exception. Categories and Timings  are based on Team Age and Gender. Team Age is the average racing age of all Team members (total number of years divided by 2,3 or 4 depending on team size). Racing Age is the age each Racer will turn during the calendar year of the race (year of race minus birth year).

Timings under approval! Visit again later for detailed categories and timings

Rules & Regulations

Guiding Principles:

  • Safety of all persons involved

  • Running a Clean and Healthy race with a level playing field for all

  • Creating a Race of International standards

  • Protecting Race integrity and reputation

(The guiding principles will dictate decision making by the Race Committee on any issue not specifically covered in these rules)

Mandatory Pre-Race Requirements:

​Each race has certain mandatory pre-race requirements that racers must meet in order to receive a clearance to race. If racers do not meet with these requirements, their registration may be cancelled and racers may be denied from entry to the event. Please read the requirements carefully before registering for the event.