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Stoneman Arduenna from July 2020 in East Belgium

Published on 26.05.2020

"Stoneman going Belgium" - after Italy, Germany, Switzerland and Austria, the Stoneman, the licensed mountain bike challenge of ex-MTB marathon world champion Roland Stauder, is coming to East Belgium. "Stoneman Arduenna" is the name of the project that will attract both performance-oriented mountain athletes and recreational bikers to East Belgium from July 4, 2020.

On a 176 km long circuit with about 3,250 metres of altitude difference through the Belgian Eifel-Ardennes region, the participants can decide for themselves whether they want to complete the challenge in one, two or three daily stages. The Tourism Agency East Belgium (TAEB) is the official licence partner for the Stoneman project, which is only available once per country.

"We are glad that we have found a powerful partner in the Tourism Agency East Belgium, which has already successfully implemented several projects of this size" said Tilman Sobek from the Stoneman marketing company AbsolutGPS at the project presentation at the Ministry in Eupen. The contacts to the deputy TAEB managing director Dany Heck were already established three years ago. Since then, the project, which was estimated to cost a total of 221 248.50 EUR (incl. VAT), has taken concrete shape.

Nature and body

"It is an absolute premium offer, because this offer will be unique and exceptional in Belgium", said the Minister of Tourism after the signature. As far as the routing is concerned, the existing MTB trails in the south of East Belgium will be used and supplemented by some challenging and scenic sections. "The mountain bikers are mainly looking for the experience of nature and physical exertion, i.e. as many metres of altitude as possible. With the route of the Stoneman Arduenna, we can offer both to the athletes," said TAEB project manager Dany Heck, who is responsible for the planning of the route.

From a tourism point of view, the Stoneman Arduenna should attract guests from all over Europe. "The new infrastructure will benefit a large number of economic enterprises in East Belgium," explained TAEB Director Sandra De Taeye. She also hopes for a further increase in the number of overnight stays in the holiday region of East Belgium. The catchment area extends from Paris to the Belgian coast and from Amsterdam to Frankfurt am Main and Strasbourg.

In the first season, 1,000 starters are expected in East Belgium. In total, about 15,000 to 18,000 drivers will compete in the various Stoneman challenges every year from the beginning of May to the end of September. The official opening of the Stoneman Arduenna MTB course is scheduled for the 4th july 2020.

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