Zwift launch new stage race, Haute Route Watopia

A multi-stage race inspired by the amateur event

The latest step in Zwift’s evolutions is a multi-stage virtual version of the famous Haute Route.

Online training platform Zwift says the three-day event is the “most accessible” version of the popular amateur races, which will tour the sights of the Watopia map.

Stages will range from 25 to 72km and will feature some serious altitude gain, as riders will be taken up Alpe du Zwift, the Epic KOM and some of Zwift’s other challenging crimes.

Director of Haute Route, Julie Royer, said: “Haute Route has developed a world renowned reputation for delivering the most challenging events in the most exotic locations around the world.

“The virtual world opens up entirely new possibilities never seen before. Haute Route Watopia will allow more people from around the world to experience the thrill of a Haute Route event.”

Haute Route events are three or seven-day-day races for amateurs in iconic destinations around the world, including the French Alps and the Pyrenees.

The event will take place from April 3-5, with a 48km for stage one which will include the Watopia KOM, EPIC KOM and Volcano climbs, featuring 890 metres of altitude gain.

Stage two will be a short but tough 25km course, covering a warm-up in the Volcano before heading to the 12.6km-long, 8.2 per cent gradient Alpe du Zwift climb, with 1,166m of elevation.

The third and final stage will follow the Pretzel route, over 72km with 1,333m of climbing.

Zwift CEO Eric Min said: “I’m thrilled that our community will be able to experience the challenge of an Haute Route event on our platform.

“I’ve looked at the route, and it’s certainly going to be a huge challenge. However, I always like to test myself and I certainly look forward to taking part.”

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Competitors must complete all three stages over back-to-back days, with each stage being run across multiple time zones. However there will be no catch-up days, so you must complete the stage on the given day.

Anyone completing the challenge will unlock an exclusive virtual Haute Route finishers kit by Le Col and will also be entered into a prize draw to win either an entry to a three-day Haute Route event or real life a Le Col Haute Route kit.

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