Mountain Bike World Cup and trade fair - that is a combination that does not have many points of contact at first glance. But the innovative team of NürnbergMesse Brasil has proven that as an event organizer it also contributes to the success of major sports events.
"Incredible, this is a unique crowd that loves mountain biking," says Switzerland's Nino Schurter, speaking of the opening race of the 2022 Mountain Bike World Cup season, held April 8-10 in Petrópolis, Brazil. Schurter, who took his 33rd race win this weekend, setting a previous record, is considered the best athlete of all time in the sport and, as a result, has already experienced quite a bit in his career. But more than 60,000 spectators on this race weekend, as well as 30,000 at the International Mountain Cup a week earlier, provided great enthusiasm for all participants and an extra portion of motivation for the athletes.
NürnbergMesse Brasil played a not inconsiderable role in the success of the event and proved that its event know-how is not limited to exhibition halls. Recruited to organize a trade show to accompany the sports event with a total of 70 exhibitors spread over the extensive grounds, it brought together athletes, sports enthusiasts and equipment suppliers. Presented at the stands were mainly products for cycling, from bicycles to various sporting goods.
The event was also a first for the International Cycling Union. For the first time in 17 years, Brazil hosted a race in the Mountain Bike World Cup season, for which professional mountain bikers from all nations travel around the globe. Over the course of three days, titles were awarded in eight different disciplines for both men and women in Petrópolis.
Petrópolis was not chosen as the venue by chance. After all, the Brazilian city is also the birthplace of the country's greatest cyclist, Henrique Avancini. The seventh in the UCI world rankings fought to bring the World Cup to his home country. Even his biggest rivals had thanked him for the effort to create such an incredible course, revealed Avancini, who crossed the finish line in 13th place and then burst into tears, overcome with emotion.
Not only for the mountain bike sport and organizers, but also for the local economy in Petrópolis - a city that was still affected by two flood disasters at the beginning of the year - the sports and trade show event was a complete success. Riders, team members and fans from more than 30 nations from Europe, America, Africa and Oceania ensured full hotel occupancy in the region during the two weekends, as well as revenues amounting to 70 million reals, the equivalent of around 14 million euros.
Not least for this reason, Mayor Rubens Bomtempo expressed his full satisfaction with the staging of the events: "The economy is strongly based on tourism and events of this size are important for the city, which is going through a crisis at the moment. I thank every person who believes in Petrópolis and especially all the volunteers who helped us a lot."