The Transpyrenees: A New Pinnacle in Ultra Cycling

The Transpyrenees: A New Pinnacle in Ultra Cycling


Words from Carlos Mazón, race director of the Transpyrenees.

The Transpyrenees: A New Pinnacle in Ultra Cycling

Ultra cycling has boomed in recent years, and we are proud to have brought this sport back home to Spain. After battling for second place in the Trans Am in the USA, my first-ever ultra race, I returned to Spain and launched Transibérica. Initially, the Transpyrenees was meant to be a secondary event to help riders prepare for the big challenge of Transibérica. However, the Transpyrenees quickly took the spotlight and became as popular as Transibérica.


A Personal Journey into Ultra Cycling

The story of the Transpyrenees is intimately tied to my own journey in ultra cycling. My passion for this sport converted into something more serious back in 2015 in the USA. It inspired me to bring this thrilling experience back to my home country, Spain. In 2018, I founded Transibérica, Spain's first ultra cycling race. This quickly became a landmark event in the ultra cycling calendar, but it was clear that there was room for more, to make it accessible for all bicycle enthusiasts.

Thus, the Transpyrenees was born, it has developed and now has its own identity. The appeal of traversing the iconic mountain range that separates France and Spain attracted a wide range of ultra cyclists.

The Race Route and Terrain

The Transpyrenees race route is a testament to the diverse and demanding nature of ultra cycling. Stretching approximately 1000 km, the route is designed to challenge participants with a variety of passes, and an elevation gain of over 25,000 meters. Each year, the course is slightly altered to keep things interesting, incorporating new landscapes, attractions and peaks. Also every year it has a “special guest”, a one-way climb that makes every edition particular. Names like Superbagneres, Ordino-Arcalis, Cap de Long, Troumouse, or Ax-3-Domaines. What we create every year, however, the weather would make the other part of the rider experience, as the French north face is famous for its persistent mist, ensuring that riders must always be prepared for the unexpected.

"Difficult terrains always lead to beautiful destinations" this encapsulates the spirit of the race. 

Preparation and Training for Participants

Success in the Transpyrenees requires meticulous planning and preparation. Training and nutrition are critical components, but perhaps the most important element is mental fortitude. Ultra cycling is as much a mental challenge as a physical one. Riders need to have the right mindset, understand their bodies, and be prepared to push through both physical and mental barriers. Many participants view the race as an opportunity to get to know themselves better and explore their limits.


A common motivation is a lack of competition with others, because ultra cycling races are so difficult simply to complete, it shifts the focus from competition with others to competition against yourself. While racing, it often feels more like a ‘we’re all in this together’ approach rather than me vs. you.



We often get dazzled by the one with the most basic kit racing, improvising when it gets hard and teeth grinding when it gets steep, but always smiling in between.

Environmental and Cultural Impact

The Transpyrenees is committed to minimising its environmental footprint and promoting sustainable tourism. The race route is designed to respect the natural landscape, and efforts are made to interact positively with local communities. Riders are encouraged to experience the rich cultural heritage of the regions they pass through, creating a deeper connection with the areas they travel through.

Supporting More Women in Ultra-Distance Racing

One of our key goals is to support and encourage more women to participate in ultra-distance racing. Since Transibérica was born in 2018, we have seen a steady increase in female participants. To further this trend, we have introduced initiatives such as women’s ultra camps, which provide training and support for female cyclists of all levels. By increasing visibility and representation, addressing safety concerns, and fostering inclusivity, we hope to make ultra cycling more and more accessible and appealing to women

Looking Ahead

As the Transpyrenees continues to grow, we remain committed to providing a challenging and rewarding experience for all participants. The race is not just about conquering a mountain range; it is about discovering new strengths, living lasting memories, and celebrating the spirit of ultra cycling. With each edition, we aim to inspire more cyclists to take on this epic challenge and join the ever-expanding community of ultra riders.