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Marathon of the Dolomites 2024: a cycling challenge among the peaks of the Alps

The Marathon of the Dolomites, also known as the Maratona dles Dolomites, is more than just a cycling race. It is an experience that combines challenge, natural beauty and community spirit. For the cyclists lucky enough to take part on July 7, 2024, it is a prestigious milestone and a memory that will last a lifetime. For cycling enthusiasts all over the world, the Maratona dles Dolomites remains a dream come true and a symbol of what can be achieved with dedication and passion.

Every year Val Badia is transformed into an exciting stage where the power of nature and human determination come together to create an extraordinary event. Whether you are a participant or an enthusiastic spectator, the Maratona dles Dolomites offers an unforgettable experience in the heart of the most beautiful mountains in the world.

Origins and history of the Maratona dles Dolomites

The Maratona dles Dolomites was born in 1987 thanks to the initiative of a group of cycling enthusiasts from Val Badia. Since then, the race has grown exponentially in popularity and prestige, becoming an unmissable event for lovers of two wheels. Every year thousands of participants gather to take part in this extraordinary event, which has become a symbol of passion, challenge and respect for nature.

How to take part in the Dolomites Marathon

Unlike other local events, the Dolomites Marathon is a closed event with a maximum of 8,000 participants. Of these, 4,300 are selected through a lottery that can be accessed through the official event website. The other 3,700 places are reserved for those with vested rights (participants in previous editions), those registered through official tour operators, special guests, and those who opt for a premium registration, the surplus of which is earmarked for charitable purposes, underscoring the Marathon’s commitment to making a difference not only in the world of cycling, but also in society.

Information about the route of the Marathon of the Dolomites 2024

Once again this year, the event will feature three different routes of varying length and difficulty:

  • Marathon route: 138 km with a difference in altitude of 4230 meters;
  • Medium route: 106 km with a difference in altitude of 3130 meters;
  • Sellaronda route: 55 km with a difference in altitude of 1780 meters.

Each route crosses some of the most famous passes in the Dolomites, such as Passo Pordoi, Passo Sella, Passo Gardena and Passo Campolongo. The combination of long climbs and technical descents makes the Maratona dles Dolomites a true test of strength and endurance.

Long route or marathon route

This is the most demanding route of the Maratona dles Dolomites, with an impressive length of 138 km and a difference in altitude of 4230 meters. The “Marathon route” starts in La Villa and takes cyclists towards Corvara, crossing the Campolongo Pass before descending towards Arabba.

It continues with a series of passes – Pordoi, Sella and Gardena – that lead back to Corvara and to the Campolongo Pass. After the descent to Pieve di Livinallongo, there is a flatter stretch that offers a brief respite before the 9.9-kilometer climb with an average gradient of 9.3 percent to the Giau Pass. Once over the pass, riders descend to Pocol and face another tough climb to the Valparola Pass.

The finish line is approached with a descent into Val Badia and the final challenge: a short but steep climb up to Mür dl Giat, which leads to the finish line in Corvara.

Long route or marathon route

Medium route

A little less challenging, but the numbers speak for themselves: 106 km and 3130 meters of elevation gain. It mainly follows the long route described above, but avoids the ascent of Passo Giau by detouring to Passo Falzarego and Valparola.

Medium route Maratona delle Dolomiti

Short Route

It coincides with the legendary Sellaronda route, 55 km long and 1780 meters high. If you choose this route, you’ll start from La Villa, pass through Corvara, the Campolongo Pass, Arabba, the Pordoi Pass, the Sella Pass, the Gardena Pass and, like the other routes, finish in Corvara.

Short Route Maratona dles Dolomites

Detailed program of the Marathon of the Dolomites 2024

Do you want to know all the details of the program? Here is all you need to know.

The start is scheduled for 6:30 a.m., but we advise you to arrive early to avoid being in the last starting group. The event will be broadcast live on RAI 2 from just before 6:30 a.m. until noon, allowing cycling fans to follow the exciting stages of the race from the comfort of their homes.

The first passage of the riders through Corvara is scheduled for 8:30 a.m., while at 10:00 a.m. the Fanzone Mür dl Giat (with food, drinks and entertainment) will begin in La Villa. This will be an opportunity for friends, family and fans to cheer on the athletes before the tough climb, which has a gradient of up to 19%.

The first riders of the medium route will cross the finish line in Corvara at 10:00 a.m., followed an hour later, at 11:00 a.m., by the riders of the marathon route. Right here in Corvara the Rana Pasta Party will take place, a convivial moment to celebrate the efforts of the race.

Finally, at 15:30, at the end of the event, the official award ceremony for the first in each category and for the various trophies will take place at the local ice rink, accompanied by musical entertainment.

The best cycling clothes for the Dolomites Marathon 2024

July 7th is full summer and most of the participants will come from cities where the temperatures are generally high. But this is the first big misconception. It is good to remember that the course goes from 1,500 meters to over 2,000 meters. An overcast and cold day could make your participation in the Dolomites Marathon even more difficult.

For this reason, we recommend that you pack both a summer suit and an average spring outfit, a windproof or rainproof long sleeve, arm & leg warmers.

Remember that you will be on the starting grid at 6:30 a.m., so equip yourself with an old tracksuit to take off just before the start. 🙂

To fully immerse yourself in the unique spirit of the event, we invite you to visit the Lagazoi online store, where the official Maratona dles Dolomites clothing is available.
Here you can buy not only the official Maratona 2024 kit, but also a wide range of accessories such as helmets, sunglasses, socks, windproof jackets, sleeves, leggings and much more.

The official apparel for the event is provided by Castelli, a leading cycling brand known for its excellence and all-Italian design.
The collection includes cycling apparel for all seasons, with state-of-the-art materials that ensure optimal performance in all conditions. Thanks to these garments, you will always be able to ride in complete safety and make your experience at the Marathon of the Dolomites unforgettable.

The theme of the Marathon of the Dolomites 2024

The 37th edition of the Maratona dles Dolomites will be dedicated to the theme “Mutatio”. The president of the organizing committee, Michil Costa, describes it in precise and touching words, with many references to Buddhist theories, but also to Greek philosophy. In fact, according to Costa, it is only in the deep nocturnal silence of the Dolomites that everything is “Anatta,” that is, everything is impermanent and in constant becoming, in constant mutation.

In the philosophical context of the absence of a permanent self and its independence, nothing seems more self-sufficient or autonomous. None of us is an island, but we are all connected to each other in this constant transformation, like the different parts of the body (like the legs that push the pedals, the hands that grip the handlebars, but also the eyes that admire the Dolomites).

The concept is to transcend the individual ego to a kind of “non-self” in which each of us, both as a human being and as an athlete, can only exist if we are in relationship with the outside world, a relationship that involves both others and the beauty of the surrounding nature. This is exactly the principle of “Mutatio”: everything in our life is constantly changing. The Marathon will change from previous years, as will the participants and the results. Costa concludes by quoting the philosopher Heraclitus and his famous panta rei (“everything flows”).

The Marathon logo, created by designer Manuel Bottazzo, is also a tribute to constant metamorphosis and transformation. Inspired by the literature of Kafka and Ovid, as well as the art of Henry Matisse and Victor Vasarely, Bottazzo creates a logo whose predominant color is purple, the quintessential symbol of mutation and the union of opposites.

Taking part in the Marathon is one of the most intense and rewarding experiences of your life. Get ready, choose the official Marathon of the Dolomites clothing and enjoy every moment of this great adventure among the peaks of the Alps. Good luck and happy pedaling!