Annual ‘Dirt Weekend’ bike festival in Nuvali set to blaze trail anew | Lifestyle.INQ

OCTOBER 27, 2022

Nuvali ‘Dirt Weekend’ executives strike a pose during a media launch on October 13 at Hard Rock Cafe in Glorietta. From left: Former national cyclist and event technical committee head Athena Mendoza, Nuvali General Manager John Estacio and Deputy Secretary General for National Sports Association of Philippine Cycling Kamilla Sumagui. Photo by KHRISTIAN IBARROLA/INQUIRER.NET.

Nuvali’s yearly cycling showcase “Dirt Weekend” has been serving as the ultimate biking sanctuary for enthusiasts since 2009.

Now entering its eighth year, one of the premier biking events in the Philippines for professionals and amateurs alike is again opening its tracks for cyclist to showcase their skills in the form of spirited competitions.

The friendly contests also aim to elevate the performance of each participant in hopes of becoming at par with international standards.

This year’s installment, which is slated to take place on Nov. 11 and 12,  will feature Asia’s qualifying leg for the 2017 Cross Country Marathon World Championships in Germany sometime next year.

Nuvali’s trademark Cross Country Fun Race, which runs 35 kilometers around the estate, will also introduce a special “Fat Bike” category.

Speaking to members of the press during a media launch at the Hard Rock Cafe in Glorietta 3 on Thursday, Nuvali General Manager John Estacio explained why the self-supporting eco landmark has been such a staple for the Philippine biking community.

Nuvali General Manager John Estacio assures members of the press that this year will be the best “Dirt Weekend’ yet.  Photo by KHRISTIAN IBARROLA/INQUIRER.Net

“Nuvali is known as a popular destination for mountain bikers with its natural trails and dedicated lanes that encourage biking as a sport and a mode of transportation. We would like to take this a step further and serve as a venue for world-class competitions in order to recognize local talents as well as give our athletes a chance to compete globally,” he said.

With the help of the international governing body on sports cycling events, the Union Cyclists Internationale (ICU), the event will also feature international riders from Japan and Portugal.

Last year “Dirt Weekend” pioneered the first ever Philippine Mountain Biking (MTB) National Championship and Philippine MTB Marathon National Championship, both sanctioned by the ICU.

Both events gathered over 2,000 riders, and Nuvali is anticipating even more contestants in this year’s festivities.

The ultimate community building experience
‘Dirt Weekend’ executives entertain questions from the media. Photo by KHRISTIAN IBARROLA/

Aside from the obvious holistic benefits that cycling provides, “Dirt Weekend”’ executives are urging the public to sign up for the event to establish camaraderie and address some social issues.

“I’m happy that lahat ng klaseng tao naglalaro po dito—from the real amateur guys, all the way to the elite (I’m happy that people from all walks of life participate. From the real amateur guys, all the way to the elite),” Estacio said.

“This is one of the events where we break the social status. It’s more of a community building that happens,” the Nuvali representative added.

Former national cyclist and technical committee head for the event Athena Mendoza expressed Nuvali’s motivations for putting up a much bigger and better cycling event year after year.

“It all boils down for the rider’s experience. We only want the best for our riders,” she told members of the local media.

“We want to put the best foot forward so that when we invite other foreign riders to come, they’ll get their money’s worth to go on a trip here. They’ll also get to see the beauty of the trails of the Philippines. It’s a different experience for them,” she added.

Hopeful riders will have to be at least 15 years old to join the festivities, while those who wish to take part in the UCI World Series Qualifiers must be at least 19 years of age.

Interested participants may still sign up online until Oct. 25 through their website, or for mobile. Late-registration rates will apply for those who will sign up from Oct. 26 to 31.

Those who wish to take part in the Cross Country Fun Race will have to pay a registration fee of P925, and P1,300 for the UCI Marathon World Series hopefuls.

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