The fifth iteration of “Race the Pearl,” a 24-hour race traverses from Point Pedro to Dondra Head, will take off on November 5, 2022. Six international cyclists will lead the challenge of covering the 600-kilometer distance in “Race the Pearl.” At the same time, over 50 other participants will join either as teams and enter, relay-style, or as individual cyclists.
Spinner Cycling, the organizing and technical partner of Ironman 70.3 Colombo and “Around the Pearl in 10 Days,” a related cycling event, launches “Race the Pearl,” endorsed by the Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau, intending to promote the #VisitSriLanka campaign through cycling.
Remarkably, “Race the Pearl” has been approved as a qualifying event for the upcoming RAAM (Race Across America), a renowned ultra-distance road cycling race that spans between the west coast and the east coast of the USA for a total distance of over 4,800 kilometers. This is also declared as one of the qualifying events for RAAM. This time, the six leading riders—one from the United States, two from Sri Lanka, and three from Great Britain—will bike around the clock, intending to rack up RAAM qualification points.
The route will take five phases. While riding through the gales of Elephant Pass, the ascent of Laggala, and the likely elephant encounters while cycling in the dark, this will be full of unforgettable experiences for all riders.
The organizers will issue all registered participants a “Visit Sri Lanka-White Rider Jersey” before the race. All participants who successfully cross the finish line within 24 hours will secure a Medal of Grit, and those who finish the race within the 30-hour cutoff period will acquire a Finisher T-shirt. Those who beat the race times in the 24-hour solo and 24-hour team races will be rewarded with the prestigious Pearl Jersey, which is the pinnacle of achievement in this event.
This will be the first step in expanding the “Race Vacation” sector to promote “cycling tourism” in Sri Lanka. The Ironman 70.3 franchise had a positive economic effect of USD 3 million within a week of establishing the benchmark for sports tourism. Indirectly, it is also expected to significantly benefit the micro- and SME sectors of Sri Lanka.