March 18, 2018
Register at gfnyuruguay.com.
Aeropuerto Internacional de Punta del Este is at Laguna del Sauce, 20km west of Punta del Este which can be easily reached by taxi.
Book a room in a GFNY partner hotel here.
Don’t hesitate to contact GFNY Uruguay at firstname.lastname@example.org
Tremendous growth for GFNY Uruguay
Vistiors from nearby Montevideo, Buenos Aires and the Brazilian metropoles Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paulo as well as far beyond flocked to Punta del Este in Uruguay to combine GFNY racing with a vacation. GFNY Uruguay more than doubled its registered riders from the inaugural 2016 edition, to over 750 registered riders at the 2017 edition. The inaugural GFNY Uruguay was the first mass participation cycling marathon ever held in the country and its growth in the second year proves the increasing popularity of cycling marathons.
Punta del Este is well known as one of the major Latin American beach resorts. But it wasn’t all about relaxing and enjoying the late summer sun this Sunday at GFNY Uruguay.
Latin America’s bike racers took their summer fitness into this challenging one-day race. The 180km race started and finished in the heart of Punta del Este. After following the South Atlantic shore, the route turned inland where the undulating terrain added up to a formidable challenge: 2000m of climbing.
Half way through the race where the riders hit the over-10%-steep climbs, a group of six riders split off the remaining lead group. A fast and flat lead-up to the finish meant it would come down to a sprint finish. Uruguayan Ricardo Guedes edged out countryman Roderyck Asconeguy after 4:35:20. Joaquin Ansolabehere (also Uruguay) rounded out the podium.
The women’s race was won in 4:57:40 by 2016 GFNY Championship NYC runner-up Marcella Toldi from Brazil. Flora Meirelles (also Brazil) finished 7 minutes behind her with Uruguayan Johanna Noelia Bracco Olmedo a further 8 minutes back.
While just a few riders were in the hunt for the overall win, there were many aiming
to finish among the top 10% of finishers in their category to qualify for a racer
corral spot at the Campagnolo GFNY World Championship in NYC on May 21, 2017.
“It’s so much fun to see the excitement for GFNY in Latin America where we go from strength to strength,” said GFNY CEO Uli Fluhme. “There is a hunger and appreciation for quality cycling marathon races by riders in the region that is currently unparalleled. We already have races in Mexico, Colombia, Brasil, Argentina, Chile and Uruguay, and we’re adding 3-4 more in LatAm alone. GFNYs success comes down to the hard work of our local organizers who understand their riders because they are the riders themselves.”
GFNY Uruguay: first mass participation cycling race ever held in the country
Reliving the inaugural GFNY Uruguay
The inaugural GFNY Uruguay was the first mass participation cycling race ever held in the country. The host town of Punta del Este set the scene with its many beaches, elegant seaside homes, yacht harbor, high-rise apartment buildings, exclusive hotels and glitzy restaurants. “Punta” is South America’s most glamorous resort.
GFNY Uruguay offered two distance options: a long route of 112-mi / 182km and 6,575ft / 2004m of climbing and a medium route of 53-mi / 85km and 2,637ft / 804m of climbing.
Punta is notoriously windy and conditions on race day were no different: gusts of up to 60km/h made the racing interesting. A compact peloton took the first 40km along the coast at high speeds. After numerous fruitless attacks, Martin Ericla from Argentina escaped successfully and used the strong tail winds to build his lead to 6 minutes. Some riders in the chase group started to get nervous but the seasoned racers knew that once the hilly section with cross- and headwinds would begin, this lead would crumble quickly.
After the medium and long distance diversion at km 70, the racing hit its decisive phase in the steep Uruguayan hills. A 12% climb at Pueblo Eden burst the peloton and a lead group of five eventually formed. They soon caught up to Ericla who was spent from his solo effort and eventually dropped all the way back to the second group.
Uruguayan Jose Silvera Bonifacio took the win in 5:09:08h, outsprinting compatriots Gustavo Piriz and Leandro Ferraz.
“Here in Uruguay, we’re used to doing circuit races with multiple small loops,” said Bonifacio after his win. “I loved racing on such a big, one loop course, including the early miles right through the heart of Punta. This was an experience on another level, very exciting!”
Meanwhile the women’s race was solidly in Argentina’s hand: Laura Rossi took the win in 6:05:45h, taking half an hour out of seasoned GFNY racer Paula Fanti from Buenos Aires. Veronica Lienhard, also from BA, completed the podium.
For the age groupers in the peloton, GFNY Uruguay served as a qualifier for the racer corral at the GFNY Championship in NYC on May 15, 2016. The top 10% in each age group earned one of the coveted spots in the front of the 5000-rider peloton in NYC.
“Being part of a peloton of mostly South American athletes is a unique experience,” adds GFNY CEO Uli Fluhme who raced as well. “Their passion not just for life in general but also for cycling in particular is compelling. Plus, thanks to the incredible support of the local police forces, everyone was truly treated like a ‘Pro for a Day’ as the motto of GFNY states.”