Sembalun Challenge 2016

Quick Facts:

  • Distance: 115km
  • Difficulty: Hard
  • Surface: On road
  • Elevation gain: 2,120 m
  • Start: Mataram
  • Pit stop 1: Terara 57.5 km
  • Pit stop 2: Lemor 85 km

At 6 am 76 cyclists from Indonesia, Malaysia and Singapore were already lined up on the start line in from of the official residence of West Nusa Tenggara Governor. The governor, Dr Zainul Majdi, a keen cyclist, gave an encouragement to the participants before the Regional Police Chief Brig. Gen. Umar Septono waved the flag to officially start the non-competition road bike race organized by Lombok Bike Community (LBC).

The race then took the new high way road leading to the airport, a flat stage until they turned left to the Batu Jai road where the track turned to be a bit uphill. At about 8 am the group arrived at Terara for the first pit stop. No drama so far. There were a lot of drinks, fruits, cakes and hospitality provided by the local police head.

The race the continued with the second leg from Terara to Lemor, about 27.5 km distance, going from elevation 200 m to 450 m. For experience cyclists, this was not a problem. They still managed to push their pedal at higher speeds until they arrived at Lemor police station at the foothill of Mount Rinjani, 3726m.

But the next stage was a nightmare for those who never rode this track. Also from here the King of Mountain competition was started. This is 30 km stage going from elevation 450 m to elevation 1900 m. The road was very difficult with too many steep and long climbs and climbing turns. This stage was so difficult that many cyclists decided to drop out.

At about 1 pm the group finally reached the finish line at the Pusuk Sembalun Park. “Thanks God we finally reached the finish line after struggling at the last stage,” said Dr Zainul Majdi.

“This route is very difficult. I have participated in Bromo Challenge which was difficult. But Sembalun Challenge is much more difficult,” said a participant from Malaysia.

“This track is not for me. It is damn hard,” said a participant from Makkasar. (LI/KM)

It's damn hard track. Photo: Erman Maulana

It’s damn hard track. Photo: Erman Maulana

The hardest track in Lombok. Photo: Adhi Ewes

The hardest track in Lombok. Photo: Adhi Ewes

About Author: Kasan Mulyono
Writer. Lecturer. Ph.D in Economics. Mine worker. PR veteran. Casual cyclist. Father of 4. Husband to Kartina. Moslem. Lives in Lombok & West Sumbawa, West Nusa Tenggara, Indonesia. FB: KasanMulyono2015 Email: k_mulyono@yahoo.com Twitter: KasanMulyono Instagram: KasanMulyono