Video and Race Report: Trans Madeira 2019 - Day 3

Jun 6, 2019
by Trans Madeira  


From Funchal to Sao Vicente via the mountains. the traverse from the south of the island to the north.

Starting on the second highest peak of the island riders raced epic alpine ridgelines, battled deep dust, hiked exposed switchbacks and followed trout filled levadas through to one of the most loam filled trails in existence.

With 8 hours in the saddle, today's ride was one of adventure with only 4 special stages.

46km // 1680m Up // 2880m Down

With a clear forecast the last priorities before bed are to hang the race kit for optimum drying.
With a clear forecast the last priorities before bed are to hang the race kit for optimum drying.

Or do those small difficult by day tasks under the light of headlamp
Or do those small difficult by day tasks under the light of headlamp

Scoring a decent bike rack.
Scoring a decent bike rack.

Mechanics working late into the night.
Mechanics working late into the night.

A beautiful start to the day with views of Funchal.
A beautiful start to the day with views of Funchal.

Magical views on the way to the first stage.
Magical views on the way to the first stage.

Bikes arriving en-mass
Bikes arriving en-mass

This hike was pretty small compared to what was coming up.
This hike was pretty small compared to what was coming up.

A long look at the hike ahead.
A long look at the hike ahead.

Stage 1 is classic alpine rock which progresses to these man made turns at the bottom.
Stage 1 is classic alpine rock which progresses to these man-made turns at the bottom.

After setting off from the second highest peak the first stage of the day was greeted by layers upon layers of mountains.
After setting off from the second highest peak the first stage of the day was greeted by layers upon layers of mountains.


Yellow is definitely nature s vibe here at the moment.
Yellow is definitely nature's vibe here at the moment.

High speed singletrack but watch out for the odd sniper rock.
High-speed singletrack, but watch out for the odd sniper rock.

Noga Korem is at home in the dry and deep dusty conditions.
Noga Korem is at home in the dry and deep dusty conditions.

Last night s camp below riders would make a U-Turn after this stage and climb towards the north of the island.
Last night's camp below, riders would make a U-Turn after this stage and climb towards the north of the island.

The location of last night s camp in the distance.
The location of last night's camp in the distance.

One of the organisers John Fernandes out on track ensuring everything runs smoothly.
One of the organisers, John Fernandes out on track ensuring everything runs smoothly.

Ludo May in June.
Ludo May, in June.

DYED Yes but too much.
DYED? Yes, but too much.

Even with only 140 riders in the field the first and last down face different tracks given how dry the dirt is at the moment
Even with only 140 riders in the field, the first and last down face different tracks given how dry the dirt is at the moment!

Pombo is yet to lose a day of racing here in Madeira.
Pombo is yet to lose a day of racing here in Madeira.

How not to ride the deep dust.
How not to ride the deep dust.

Pombo with a masterclass.
Pombo with a masterclass.

Medics on hand at the bottom of every stage.
Medics on hand at the bottom of every stage.

Plunging into the darkness there s a feed station in there somewhere.
Plunging into the darkness, there's a feed station in there somewhere.

An unfortunate day ender. The trails here are tough.
An unfortunate day ender. The trails here are tough.

A million cobbled switchbacks before the valley bottom.
A million cobbled switchbacks before the valley bottom.

The final switchbacks of the most brutal part of the climb our of nuns valley
The final switchbacks of the most brutal part of the climb our of nuns valley

360 degree views.
360-degree views.

Not everyone enjoyed it
Not everyone enjoyed it

A light local refreshment mid-ride.
A light local refreshment mid-ride.

Appropiate headwear for a hot and long climb.
Appropiate headwear for a hot and long climb.

On the north side the road climbs are greener.
On the north side the road climbs are greener.

Would you
Would you?

Whites of the eyes after a few helmet clipping moments in the tight levada.
Whites of the eyes after a few helmet clipping moments in the tight levada.

The levadas were long and dark and if you were sensible you d have your headtorch. This one s for Dave.
The levadas were long and dark and if you were sensible you'd have your headtorch. This one's for Dave.

Holiday snaps.
Holiday snaps.

Beautiful levada liaison before stage 3.
Beautiful levada liaison before stage 3.

Despite no rainfall today there s still plenty of moisture if you look in the right places.
Despite no rainfall today there's still plenty of moisture if you look in the right places.

Riders stop to take in the surroundings.
Riders stop to take in the surroundings.

First turn in on stage 3 and the grin will already be from ear to ear.
The first turn in on stage 3 and the grin will already be from ear to ear.

Stage 3 was prime loam amongst the greenery
Stage 3 was prime loam amongst the greenery

We may be here to race but the fun was overwhelming .
We may be here to race but the fun was overwhelming.


One warp speed bob sled run.
One warp speed bobsled run.

Dark ribbon of dirt from top to bottom.
Dark ribbon of dirt from top to bottom.

Layers of loam.
Layers of loam.

Dropping in to a steep switchback on stage 4.
Dropping into a steep switchback on stage 4.

Leaf litter soon to be loam.
Leaf litter soon to be loam.

In the green room.
In the green room.

Levada liason don t lose your edge.
Levada liason, don't lose your edge.

Local specators out in force.
Local spectators out in force.

It takes a fair bit of food to fuel 140 racers.
It takes a fair bit of food to fuel 140 racers.

Sao Vicente for camp tonight cliffs towering overhead and the sounds of the swell providing the perfect white noise.
Sao Vicente for camp tonight, cliffs towering overhead and the sounds of the swell providing the perfect white noise.



6 Comments

  • + 3
 Absolutely gorgeous trails. Amazing how differently you need to ride on these epic rides vs the local rips.
  • + 1
 My Strava said it was 1999m up - felt like it!
  • + 1
 dosel anyone know where I can get the transmadeira route online?
  • + 1
 That stage three is one of the best trails ever
  • + 2
 WU TANG CLAN !!!
  • + 1
 "FastnWeird"

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