The one-day 105 km race, climbing nearly 11,000 ft, takes place in eastern Taiwan Friday
By: Ching-Tse Cheng, Taiwan News, Staff Writer
Established in 2010, the KOM Challenge is a 105 km road race that takes riders from the start at sea level in Hualien, and passes through the Taroko Gorge to finish atop Mount Wuling (武嶺), after traversing Taiwan's highest paved road at 3,275 m (11,000 ft). It is described as one of the most beautiful rides in the world, but also one of the hardest,
According to the Cyclist, there is a steady climb of nearly 1,000 m in the final 10 km, with a road incline of up to 27 percent in certain sections. There will also be traffic control in place on roads around Mount Wuling and the Wuling Pass . Former participants include Tour de France winners Cadel Evans and Vincenzo Nibali, former Olympic silver medalist Emma Pooley, and former World Tour rider Phil Gaimon.
For this year's competition, 730 contestants from 42 different countries have registered to participate, according to the event's website. Taiwanese elite cyclists Liu Shu Ming (劉書銘), Lin Xiao Long (林曉龍) and Chen Xuan-Ye (陳玄曄) will also team up with Tarmo Vannas from Estonia, Madeleine Gustafsson from Sweden and Motohiro Imai (今井基裕) from Japan to form Team DIZO, reports Liberty Times. [FULL STORY]