The inaugural edition of the Bike Abu Dhabi Festival is underway with championship events, community rides and prize money worth Dh2 million.

At part of the festival, Abu Dhabi will host two world-class cycling events. The fifth edition of the UCI Urban Cycling World Championship is being held in the region for the first time and comprises three disciplines: BMX Freestyle Park (on the Olympic Games programme since Tokyo 2020), as well as the BMX Freestyle Flatland and trials. The championship concludes on Sunday.

Also, the Abu Dhabi Gran Fondo will see 500 amateur athletes tackle a 150km course from Abu Dhabi to Al Ain and compete for a Dh2 million prize pot on Saturday with an equal split for both men and women.

The festival, held under the patronage of Sheikh Khaled bin Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, member of the Abu Dhabi Executive Council and Chairman of the Abu Dhabi Executive Office, brings 300 of the world’s top urban cyclists to Abu Dhabi.

The festival is the latest initiative under the Bike Abu Dhabi platform, launched by Sheikh Khaled in November 2021 to spearhead the emirate’s long-term ambitions to become a leading global cycling hub.

The festival also comes a year after Abu Dhabi received the prestigious UCI Bike City label from the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) in recognition of Abu Dhabi’s commitment to promoting cycling and developing cycling infrastructure and programmes across the region's communities.

Aref Al Awani, General Secretary, Abu Dhabi Sports Council, said: “We are extremely proud to host the spectacular UCI Urban Cycling World Championships in 2022. After receiving the prestigious UCI Bike City label in 2021, we now enhance our portfolio of world class cycling events and entertainment offerings in the region and look forward to showcasing, to the world, what Abu Dhabi and the UAE has to offer, for both amateur and professional cyclists.”

David Lappartient, President, the UCI, said: “We look forward to Abu Dhabi, the first UCI Bike City in the Middle East and Asia, hosting this year’s UCI Urban Cycling World Championships. For the first time since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, we will again see athletes from BMX Freestyle Park, BMX Freestyle Flatland and trials come together for these unique UCI World Championships. Abu Dhabi will provide a majestic stage for this action-filled event.”

In addition to competitive events, the Bike Abu Dhabi Festival will host a variety of cycling events and activities for the community, covering all ages and abilities and including dedicated community rides for ladies only. An event village with entertainment and family friendly activities will provide activities such as short bicycle courses, face painting, bungee trampolines, graffiti artists, street dancers, BMX stunt shows, live music and lots more, will be hosted at Nation Towers.

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