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TPR - What does that mean

Trans Pyrenees Race, this is the meaning of the acronym up here. But TPR in fact means much more than that. TPR is the sister race of TCR, the iconic Trans Continental Race, organized by late UltraCycling legend Mike Hall.

What's so special about this race? First of all, is the spirit behind it: the spirit of fair play, the spirit of adventure, and the spirit of self sufficiency. You must rely solely on yourself to complete the ride, and this is intended to be taken very literally in order to respect the bigger Spirit of the race. No outside help, no advantages, totally self reliant.

And this is what makes the difference as the whole route must be drawn by the single participant. You just need to go from point A to point B, but you must find the best route to do so. Easy? Think again. When you have to cover thousands of kilometers on a bike, on roads unknown, it total loneliness, this can become a daunting (and dangerous) task. Planning well is the number one element. Make a mistake during the planning, and you'll pay it dearly during the race.


And here I am, planning my first TPR. Luckily, TPR is shorter than TCR. Luckily, around 700km of the route are mandatory meaning less work finding a route. However, elevation is supposed to be massive, around 40.000m in total, and a mistake over a mountain can cost great delays. Planning it well could mean having to cover less distance. Last edition's distance covered by participants was differing by hundreds of kilometers...

TPR is the passport to TCR. You must apply and be selected to be eligible to race this. And once you are accepted you don't want to waste your chance. Because completing TPR may mean winning a ticket to TCR. And very few have such an honor...

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