Vuelta a España winner Roberto Heras is headed to Mongolia for the inaugural Mongolia Bike Challenge. The ex-professional, Spanish road cyclist confirmed his presence in the mountain bike stage race that will take place on the East Asian Steppes. He and Italian Marzio Deho are the two favorites for the race, which will take place from August 7 to 22.
Since his retirement from racing, Heras has competed in various events including the La Ruta de los Conquistadores and the Brompton World Championships.
84 racers from 10 nations are currently registered to compete in the land of Gengis Khan for the Mongolia Bike Challenge. The field size is limited to 108, a sacred number in Buddism. 108 is the number of Stupa placed in the walls of the Erden Zuu Monastery where the race will end after 10 stages and 1,400km.
Heras raced as a road pro from 1997 to 2005. During his career, he won three editions of the Vuelta a Espana in 2000, 2003 and 2004. For a time, he was also a US Postal Service teammate of Lance Armstrong. He won the Vuelta in 2005; however, he was disqualified from that result after testing positive for EPO.
Registration closes on June 30. For more information, visit www.mongoliabikechallenge.com.