NISEKO, Japan--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The fourth annual Niseko Classic, Japan's only UCI Gran Fondo World Series qualifier, is scheduled for July 9, 2017 in Niseko, Hokkaido, Japan. Race participants will ride on fully closed roads and experience some of the most breathtakingly scenic cycling in Japan, taking them over mountain passes, through farmland and along the ocean. Over 1000 athletes from 25 countries including Japan, Singapore, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Taiwan, Norway, Australia, USA, Italy, UK, Netherlands are registered for the race. Niseko Classic warmly welcomes riders of all levels: those who aim to make the podium and others who wish to cross the finish line in the best possible time.
Riders have the choice between the 140km long course, with a challenging 2,362m of climbing including ascents of the Niseko Panorama Line and famous Nimi Onsen climbs. The single-loop course will take riders through Hanazono, over the mountain ranges into the farming district of Kyowa town, and follow the Shiribeshi river to its mouth on the coast of the Sea of Japan where they will turn back and traverse the other side of the mountains into Niseko Valley and over rolling hills into Grand Hirafu Resort.
A shorter, but equally testing 70km course starts in Rankoshi town and follows the Shiribeshi across farming flatlands to the Sea of Japan. The course returns on the opposite side of the river and ascends crossing the ranges before coming down into the Niseko valley, and winding around the base of Mt. Annupuri towards the finish in Niseko.
Both routes finish in the heart of the town of Grand Hirafu, an international ski resort revered for its legendary powder snow. A local food and beer festival awaits the riders, where they can sample famous Niseko produce and Japanese delicacies. With the entire community supporting the event, it’s a fantastic fun-filled weekend for non-cyclists too, with performances, music, traditional displays and fireworks.
For the age groupers in the peloton, the Niseko Classic serves as an official qualifier for the UCI Gran Fondo World Championships in Albi, France on August 24th, 2017. The top 25% in each age group earn one of the coveted spots where they will compete against the world’s best.
Entries open now!
For Niseko Classic race and event details please see http://bit.ly/nisekoclassic2017