From Owl to the Silk Road Mountain Race

The Silk Road Mountain Race is a bikepacking race in Kyrgyzstan. Brutally hard. Many people say it is the hardest bike challenge in the world.

Most of the hike takes place in terrain in the beautiful Kyrgyz countryside. Bikers hardly encounter populated settlements and civilization; but with the incredible nature and its beauties and wildness all the more so. On the self-catering tour, entrants have to cover more than 1,500 kilometers in the cruel mountains. They are not rewarded with prizes, they are driven by the participants for their performance.

In the first part of our video series about races and Hungarian adventurers, we asked Lajos Köves why he wants to return and what the Silk Road Mountain Race gives him.

Mesterbike & Coffee served as the venue for our first meeting, where Lajos Köves ‘ brand new bike was completed while we had a good coffee. After that, the conversation was continued in the home of Lajos Castle Palace. Blue, Lajos ’dog, was present throughout as Lajos talked about the Silk Road Mountain Race challenge and the black-and-blue Ritchey Ultra bike built for the challenge.

The theory was followed by practice. We had the opportunity to experience the slopes of the hills around Várpalota, Lajos’ favorite roads. The “industrial” wind couldn’t spoil the experience either, but it helped us understand why this terrain was suitable for preparing for the Silk Road Mountain Race challenge.

Lajos Köves treads the slopes of Baglyas in the saddle of his newly built Ritchey Ultra bike.

Bence Szabó behind the lens.

During our time with Lajos Köves, we not only spent time adventuring cycling, but we also heard the wisdom of a lifetime, which made us even more inclined to try a similar challenge one day.

Six months of preparation and countless turns are waiting for Lajos on the Baglyas until the start of the Silk Road Mountain Race in August.

Until then, a good slice, Gravel!

To be continued.

Director and producer: Gangel Marcell

Video and editing: Bence Szabó

Interview and photos by Domaniczky Tivadar