Just like the year before, the 54th edition of Vätternrundan 300 km became a true fairytail. The conditions were on top for all the 19,000 who made their way around the lake. The sky was blue, downwind to Jönköping and comfortable temperature. Like it was made for cycling.
In the startling list there were participants from approximately 70 countries, including Princess Tessy of Luxembourg who cycled the race for the first time. “It was fantastic, an incredible experience” was her rating after her debut. An opinion she shared with the majority.
During Friday night we also heard Jonas Thander and Stefan Nykvist perform the new official song of Vätternrundan “Oslagbara” (“Unbeatable”) live next to the starting area.
Some riders managed to avoid the rain showers while others ended up underneath them on this 51st Vätternrundan. There’s now only two persons who have completed all 51 rides, the pioneers Stig “Lappen” Johansson and Lars-Åke Åkerman. The third pioneer Nils Dåverhög unfortunately had to cancel after about 50 miles.
The classic meal of meatballs and mashed potatoes was served on the new service depot Kinnarps Arena in Jönköping, and it all worked very well.
Eurovision winner Måns Zelmerlöw, the radio voice of the Rix FM Fredrik Birging and the artist Markoolio were some of the celebrities who, very happy but tired crossed the finish line on Saturday night.
The 50th Vätternrundan can only be seen as a huge success. The effect of the perfect weather resulted in a record in the number of starts, 20002. And with a new record in starts and realtivly few who didn’t finish, 650, there’s a record in number of completions. A total of 19 352 crossed the finish line.
Vätternrundan is a recreational bike ride and no competition, but a new time record was set by Team Tre Berg who did it in 6 hours and 33 minutes.
Among the participants we noticed the Danish Crown prince Frederik who finished his first Vätternrunda.
Vätternrundan 2014 was an amazing bike weekend. Almost perfect bike weather, a part from being slightly windy during the Saturday. With 43% riding for the first time, Vätternrundan consolidates its position at the forefront of public health.
When we sum up Vätternrundan 2014 we can see that this year’s ride broke a number of records from last year; the number of started and finished to name a few. Five hours and 20 minutes after the start, the first rider crossed the finish line after the 300km long trip around lake Vättern.
Vätternrundan 2013 was, according to our self, the best organized ride since the start in 1966. Once again a record ride with 19 406 started where many was worried that this year’s ride would be as rainy as the year before. Luckily the rain never came apart from a few sprinkles. However, the wind was a bit heavy but that didn’t stop the 18 475 that followed through and broke the record.
– To sum up; a windy yet sunny ride with loads of fabulous performances, said the CEO of Vätternrundan, Eva-Lena Frick.
A record number of registered, nations, speed and nearly a record in DNF’s (in 1985 over 2300 did not finish). Vätternrundan 2012 certainly lived up to the epithet “record-round”, and it will be remembered. 23 307 registered, 46 nations, the 500 000th start and a finish time of 6h and 38min that the Ride of Hope-group accounted for. And not since 1985 have so many failed to cross the finish line, and most certainly will Vätternrundan 2012 be remembered as one of the toughest ever. A five hour long rain forced about 2 250 bikers to quit.
This year the Eurosport Vättern GP was a part of the Swedish Cup and drew a lot of visitors. During the Friday the weather was unsteady but cleared up closer to start. The Swedish artist Martin Stenmarck sang and one of the founders of Vätternrundan, Sten-Otto Liljedahl, had a statue unveiled just before the first start. 37 nations was represented among the participants and most of the bikers witness of a great ride.
Vätternrundan hosted a panel discussion about the bikes place in traffic. That was the start of the weekends nearly euphoric feeling that started with the Swedish championship for police and firefighters. Eurosport Invitational and Eurosport Vättern GP came next and was followed by a record breaking Vätternrundan. Never before has so many registered, started or finished in Vätternrundan. And never has so few been injured. A great race and Motala showed it’s best side with great weather. Both the arrangers and participants gave Vätternrundan 2010 a very high grade. This was the year when Sub9 was separated from the other bikers for the first time
On Saturday night the final riders crossed the finish line in Vätternrundan for the 44th time. This year’s event was partially covered in rain but the weather cleared up and turned out better than expected. The big news this year was that the start was moved to the harbor in central Motala. The response from the participants was positive. The interest for Vätternrundan 2009 was huge and was fully booked in January. None saw it coming so an exclusive group of 250 that was aiming to make A Swedish Classic had to ride a separate ride before the event.
The rising demand of entries in Vätternrundan was obvious on the Friday afternoon. The queue to Changes, where you trade places, stretched all over the square. Never has so many, 15 946, started before and never has so many, 15 205, finished. A short period of rain during the Friday evening was overtaken by the sun. No major accidents or injuries but 740 riders did not finish.
A total of 34 nations took part in this year’s Vätternrundan, and the international interest has never been bigger. The expanded Expo marquee on the square was much appreciated. The ride was pleasant in the eyes of the participants and so we had a new record in the amount of starts and finishes. Worth mentioning is that the 400 000th participant crossed the finish line.