Mountain Bike Cross-country Marathon

Want to watch the world’s best cyclists go the distance at Glentress Forest in Scotland? Here’s everything you need to know about Mountain Bike Marathon.

Dates: 06 August 2023

Henri Avancini competes in the Mountain Bike Marathon at the 2023 UCI Cycling World Championships in Glentress Forest
Photo credit: Michal Cerveny


Riders will be pushed to the limit of human capability as they chew through 100km of road, gravel, punishing climbs, long descents and inhuman levels of lactic acid.

Only the strongest legs, lungs and minds will make it to the finish, where cycling immortality is the reward for answering the demands of this impossible distance.

Spectator Guide

Find all you need to know about the Mountain Bike Cross-country Marathon, the event venue, accessibility information and more, by downloading our Spectator Guide.

How it works

Mountain Bike Marathon is unique for many reasons, but the mass start - where elite riders go first, then anyone brave enough to follow - makes it special.

Elite or amateur, the distance brings a mountain of challenges… literally.

Riders have to be exceptionally fit to traverse all kinds of terrain, from speedy flats to slow climbs and everything in between. But physical prowess will only get them so far; they have to dig deep as every metre of the 100km course tests their mental toughness.

For those lucky enough just to be watching, Glentress Forest will be the perfect stage for an event that’s going to be epic in every way.

Glentress Forest

Glentress Forest,
EH45 8NB.

Mon Mitterwallner wrapped in a turquoise brushstroke

Fun Facts!

  • Riders have to be self-sufficient due to the distances between technical zones, so they carry spare tubes, a pump and multitool in their saddlebags to make quick repairs.
  • Races are similar to MTB XCO, but take place over much longer distances - up to 140km for the toughest tracks.
  • Races are either over a single longer lap out into the wild and back, or multiple shorter distance laps.
  • MTB Marathon races tend to have longer climbs and descents, so riders use a wider range of gears than XCO, to maintain leg and bike speed over the course of the gruelling route.

Upcoming events in this championship