From now until 7 March Japan’s UCI Niseko Classic gran fondo is holding a 3-stage virtual race on the ROUVY platform, with the fastest male and female rider each winning a UCI Gran Fondo World Series Championship jersey with rainbow stripes.

2021-01 - Niseko jersey

With the 2021 Niseko Classic event cancelled due to COVID, this FREE virtual challenge offers all cyclists the ability to complete on three very challenging Niseko Classic road courses developed by ROUVY.  With a massive 3003 metres of climbing in just 118.5 kilometres, participants better bring their best climbing legs!

Stage 1 – 33.1km, 886m vertical.  Follows the actual Niseko Classic road race course from Niseko Tokyu Grand Hirafu, around Niseko Annupuri, up the Niseko HANAZONO Hill Climb and finishes at Shinsennuma, the highest peak in Hokkaido.

Stage 2 – 34.6km, 818m vertical. Follows Niseko Classic medio fondo route from Rankoshi-cho, starting with a brutal 10km climb at 4% before finishing at Niseko Station.

Stage 3 – 52.4km, 1192m vertical.  A very tough course where you climb uphill for 16km, race the downhill past Chisenupuri ski area and then climb again to finish at Niseko Tokyu Grand Hirafu.

Here are the detailed route maps, stage profiles and current leaderboards for Stage1, Stage2 and Stage3. The top male and female riders with the lowest cumulative time for all three stages will win a UCI Gran Fondo World Series Championship jersey.

Currently there is no general classification ranking for all three stages, so you’ll have to keep track yourself.  Also, results from the virtual races will not qualify any riders for the 2022 UCI Gran Fondo World Championships, but you can qualify at the real world Niseko Classic on 12 June 2022.

To participate, riders must enter HERE and sign-up for a FREE 14-day ROUVY account if they do not already have one.  So far over 3100 cyclists have signed up.

PHOTOS: Niseko Classic, UCI GFWS