The second edition of the international mountain biking (MTB) competition hosted by the state tourism department would be held at Wayanad only next year. The newly-formed Kerala Adventure Tourism Promotion Society (KATPS) has been entrusted with the task of organizing the event.
Last year, the cross-country event was held on the hill tracks of Thenmala forests while the four cross (a style of mountain bike race) event was held at Kovalam in November. However, this time around, the government has decided to do away with the Four Cross event in a bid to reduce costs.
“Kerala tourism is interested in making the event a regular fixture. However, we raked up a big bill wit
h all the freebies offered to the international participants in the form of air tickets and stay,” said a source from the tourism department.
The event will be held in February at a cost of Rs 1 crore. The state government has sanctioned
The KATPS will send a team to Wayanad to chart a suitable track. The Cycling Federation of India is on board this time to approve the venues. Last year, members of the Kerala Cycling Association, Indian Railways coach K V Sudeesh and coach D Lawrence visited many locations across Kerala, and finally decided on the dam site at Thenmala. They will help locate a suitable track in Wayanad. Rs 50 lakh while the KATPS will have to the raise the rest of the money through sponsorship. “This is the first major activity entrusted to the KATPS since the organization’s formation earlier this year. The KATPS, which has been allotted office space at the tourism directorate, held its first board meeting recently,” said Asha Jose, CEO, KATPS.
Effort is also on to get the Union Cycliste Internationale, the Switzerland-based governing body for sports cycling and oversees international competitive cycling events, to include the event in its sporting calendar. Last year, international bikers from Sri Lanka, Nepal, Malaysia, Singapore and Brunei had participated in the event. This year, there will be a prize money, but there would be registration fee, too.