Mark Weir to Join World’s Best Riders in Kenya

Nov 4, 2008
by Tyler Maine  
Source: WTB

Wilderness Trail Bikes, Inc., is proud to be send its PR manager and pro athlete Mark Weir to the Fabien Barel invitational, Urge Kenya.

Mark Weir is joining a select group of the world’s best mountain bikers in a race down Mt. Kenya this February. The event, named Urge Kenya, is being organized by two-time downhill world champion Fabien Barel and Fred Glo of Tribe Sports Group. Only ten athletes will be racing this spectacular, ultra-endurance downhill event and all proceeds will be donated to ACORD, an international alliance working to promote social justice throughout Africa.

So far, the roster of invited riders includes Mark Weir, Brian Lopes, Fabien Barel, Wade Simmons, Ritchey Schley, Steve Peat, Julien Absalon and Anne Caroline Chausson, among others. The riders will spend three full days trekking to the 16,355-foot summit of Lenana Peak. Although each competitor will be assigned a Swahili guide, the riders must carry their own bikes. The hike up the mountain will serve as course inspection and the start order will be determined by each rider’s knowledge of the Swahili language, encouraging interaction between riders and guides throughout the trek.


The voyage up Mt. Kenya will undoubtedly be a life-changing bonding experience for the group. The trip down will be a flat-out battle between the world’s best mountain bike pilots across a half-dozen ecological zones, including bamboo forests and Afro-Alpine chaparral. The group will speed through the impressive landscape and finish in less than three hours.


Fabien Barel and Fred Glo are visiting the area right now organizing the event and Mark Weir is anxiously awaiting his departure in late January. “It will be a once in a lifetime trip,” said Weir. “I just hope I can breathe at 16,000 feet.” Weir also stated that he’d be riding with a paper bag over his head to prepare for the thin air. In a more serious tone, Weir stated that, “this is an incredible opportunity to use our sport to help people that are less fortunate.”


WTB, based in Mill Valley, California, has been an industry pioneer since 1982. The small, independently owned company strives to produce innovative parts and accessories for both OEM and aftermarket use. wtb.com

All photos provided by Fred Glo. www.urgekenya.com

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47 Comments

  • + 9
 thats awsomeley crazy! good luck carrying your DH bikes for 3 days up a mountain! it's an amazing cause they are doing it for, never thought mountain biking would ever go this far.
  • + 11
 africasa awesome, i spent a month in tanzania, climbed kilimogaro too!
  • + 2
 kilimanjaro?
  • + 1
 Mount Meru for me.
  • + 4
 ye thanks for the correction deric, it was a typo. saw mount meru early morning with the sun rise behind it. sounds like an awesome event guys, hope it goes well.
  • - 6
flag Jmctaggart (Nov 4, 2008 at 14:57) (Below Threshold)
 you'd think that if you climbed it you'd know how to spell it?
  • + 0
 no prob, I wish I could go there some day.
  • + 5
 jmcfaggot. i have a picture of me at the summit on my profile i your trying to say that i havent climbed it, jeeez
  • + 1
 bro, KIli is sick, i climbed it too, i got to 16,9 and got cerebral edema, started halleucinsting (i saw chuck norris) and bad to come down. i'm going back there this summer to finish it though
  • + 1
 HACE, eh? thats unfortunate.
  • + 0
 yeah bro, it sucked
  • + 3
 Best of luck with event, sure it's gonna be a huge success. Great to see the international biking community continuing to support and raise awareness of issues that our politicians frequently brush aside in the name of greed. Big props to everyone involved (especially the guides, who don't have the luxury of a DH bike to get back down on). Look forward to seeing some pics Salute
  • + 2
 YEAH WEIR!!!! Way to rep Marin County (where it all began for you less informed) and NorCal. This is going to be a nuts race...I think Weir is one of the better prepared out there cause of his other endurance events like the Hell Ride.
  • + 3
 I was there last November and Climbed Mt Kenya. Beautiful place and great people! Will Definitely do it again after school.
  • + 2
 Oh, and that hill in the third picture is the worst climb EVER!
  • + 0
 ya dude wier is a fucking mountain goat when it comes to climbing and kills it on the DH more than most know so im sure he'll rep nor cal and marin well
  • + 4
 This is amazing....what a fantastic idea....
  • + 0
 i went to kenya over the summer and some of the uses they have for ikes over there are hilarious there was onle guy carrying like 20 crates of oranges on the back of his bike.
  • + 0
 im pretty sure mark wier rode the downsville classic XC course as well as the dh course on his Vp-free. to the person who was saying they should use xc bikes
  • + 0
 he used the vp a few years back and that bike ripped with a 36 on it but this year he used a fully coil sprung nomad with fox 32's on it and it only weighted 29 pounds but then again the whole rear tire thing happened to
  • + 0
 you learn something every day.
  • + 0
 the reason the rear wheel blew out on that bike was because he was running stans notubes 355 race rim, which is their lightest xc race rim. his goal was to make the bike as light as he could.
  • + 2
 Thats one huge hike-a-bike.
  • + 2
 everytime i see a story like this it makes my heart sing. that and it reminds me i need better friends.
  • + 0
 this is some cool stuff. i really like the sound of super DH and its great that mountain biking can benefit those in need!! well done!
  • + 1
 Riding down Mt. Kenya is something I've always wanted to do since seeing Hans Rey do it in MBUK back in the day...
  • + 1
 haha theres asses in the pic above the one with the blue tank thingy
  • + 0
 This is going to make an awesome video I hope the make a feature length film about it
  • + 1
 Put this on your hike-a-bike list, Reg Mullett!
  • + 0
 When they say this will be a DH event, they won't be using DH bikes.. but larger travel XC bikes i'm sure.
  • + 0
 hopefully they just think about doing some down-hill event here in Morocco! i never seen one on live!!!
  • + 0
 Africa is sweet i went to zimbabwe for 2 weeks
  • + 0
 no doubt this will be something to remember
  • + 0
 Peaty will take it hands down
  • + 0
 The idea's behind this race are pretty epic!!
  • + 0
 Nina jua kiswahili kidogo
  • + 1
 ndiyo. awesome language
  • + 0
 this reminds me of the powerthirst video on youtube. lol
  • + 0
 Kenya is a great place. I lived their for 2 years, had a great time!
  • + 0
 POWER THIRST!
  • + 3
 RUN AS FAST AS KENYANS!
  • + 1
 THEY'LL GET DEPORTED BACK TO KENYA!!!
  • + 0
 SNAKE EYYYYYYYYYES
  • + 0
 400 BABIESSSS
  • - 1
 Cant imagine steve peat on a xc bike
  • + 1
 He'll be on the good old nomad wont he?
  • + 1
 he started out racing xc back in the 90s.

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