The UCI mountain bike world championships are returning to Austria in 2012, exactly 10 years after the country last hosted them. The races will be held in the Salzburg area from August 29 to September 9, 2012.
"Austria has confirmed its cycling competence on the international scene," said organiser Wolfgang Weiss, who was also responsible for the mountain bike Worlds in Kaprun in 2002 as well as the road Worlds in Salzburg in 2006.
"With the mountain bike marathon world championships in Kirchberg 2013 and the European mountain bike championships in 2011 in Kleinzell, this is the third major sporting event for Austria."
The cross country and trials competitions for the Worlds will be held in Saalfelden, and the four cross and downhill events will happen in Leogang, which hosted its first World Cup race this year.
World Cup racing had previously been held in Schladming, Austria, but that town will host the FIS Alpine Skiing world championships in 2013, and due to related construction, had to cancel the race. Leogang took over the World Cup race at pretty much the last minute.
"Leogang presented itself very well as organiser for the Mountain Bike World Cup race, where it stepped in for Schladming on short notice, and within two months put together a great event," said Otto Flum, president of the Austrian Cycling Federation. "That impressed the UCI."
"Of course there is not much time until 2012," said Flum. "But the people in Leogang have shown that they can cope with deadlines!"