Colombia's Paez and Slovenia's Pintaric win tough desert mountain bike race

RESENDING AS SVO

SHOWS: HATTA, DUBAI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES (FEBRUARY 7, 2019) (HERO - ACCESS ALL)

1. AERIAL VIEW OF CYCLISTS AT STARTING LINE

2. VARIOUS OF CYCLISTS BEFORE START, INCLUDING HECTOR LEONARDO PAEZ OF COLOMBIA (WHITE JERSEY - NUMBER 31)

3. VARIOUS OF START OF 60 KILOMETRE RACE

4. JURI RAGNOLI (YELLOW JERSEY - NUMBER 32) IN THE LEAD

5. AERIAL SHOT OF RACE

6. AERIAL SHOT OF A TRUCK GETTING IN THE WAY OF RAGNOLI AND OTHER CYCLISTS PASSING HIM

7. CLOSE UP OF HECTOR LEONARDO PAEZ

8. VARIOUS OF RICARDO CHIARINI (ORANGER JERSEY - NUMBER 35) IN THE LEAD

9. SLOVENIA'S BLAZA PINTARIC BEFORE START OF WOMEN'S 60 KM RACE

10. VARIOUS OF START OF 60 KM RACE

11. AERIAL VIEW OF TWO CYCLISTS, PINTARIC AND KATAZINA SOSNA FROM LITHUANIA IN THE LEAD

11. VARIOUS OF PINTARIC AND SOSNA (YELLOW JERSEY - NUMBER 2) DURING THE RACE WITH SOSNA IN THE LEAD

12. AERIAL SHOT OF THE TWO CYCLISTS

13. VARIOUS OF PINTARIC IN THE LEAD

14. ONLOOKER CLAPPING AS CYCLIST GOES PAST (THROUGH WATER) IN THE MEN'S RACE

15. VARIOUS OF HECTOR PAEZ IN THE LEAD IN THE MEN'S RACE

16. PAZ CROSSING FINISHING LINE

17. SLO MO OF PAEZ CROSSING THE LINE

18. SLO MO OF PAEZ LIFTING HIS BIKE IN CELEBRATION

19. (SOUNDBITE) (Italian) MEN'S RACE WINNER, HECTOR LEONARDO PAEZ, SAYING (ACCORDING TO TRANSLATION PROVIDED) (STARTS OFF):

"That's my unfailing discipline and determination. When I want to do something I really do it with my heart and commitment. Right then it was a path that wasn't suitable for me but anyway I have worked a lot and also in the past years improved downhill on my technique. I worked a lot and on a route that I knew I had to make a difference on the demanding climb and it went well."

20. PINTARIC CROSSING THE LINE TO WIN THE WOMEN'S RACE

21. (SOUNDBITE) (English) WOMEN'S RACE WINNER, BLAZA PINTARIC, SAYING:

"First fit zone I went with Katazina Sosna and then when I started the long steep climb I just attacked and I stayed alone, and then I just go full gas to the end."

22. VARIOUS OF MEDAL CEREMONY WITH PAEZ AND PINTARIC LIFTING THEIR TROPHIES

STORY: Colombia's Hector Paez and Slovenia's Blaza Pintaric won the first edition of the HERO Dubai mountain bike desert race in Dubai's National Park on Friday (February 7).

Paez held off the challenge of Peter Pruus to win the men's edition with a time of two hours seven minutes and 29 seconds - just over four seconds ahead of the Estonian - as he scooped the 25,000-euro winners' prize.

Czech rider Kristian Hynek was third.

Slovenia's Pintaric had to hold off a stern challenge from Lithuania's Katazina Sosna as she claimed victory in the women's event - eventually by over four seconds - with Iranian Faranak Partoazar finishing third.

Part of the HERO World Series circuit, the route at Hatta, a nature park 110 kilometres east of Dubai, was mostly on dirt roads with competitors also riding over sand.

The 60 kilometre marathon distance with a 1,600-metre elevation gain took the cyclists along Hatta's trails and the Hatta Dam, with temperatures around 27 degrees celsius

Around 400 participants from 50 countries took part in the races which also included a 30-kilometre edition.

The race was the first of the HERO World Series 2020 series and will be followed by marathon distance races in Italy's Dolomite mountains in June and the rainforest of northern Thailand in October.

(Production. Ilze Filks and Elliot Richardson)