Banyuwangi, E Java (ANTARA News) - A total of 20 teams from 22 countries will take part in the 2018 Tour de Banyuwangi Ijen (ITdBI) bike race in East Java to be held on Sept 26-29.

The ITdBI organizing committee`s Chairman, Guntur Priambodo, made the remarks here on Thursday, adding that all participants had expressed readiness to participate.

The 20 teams will be from countries including New Zealand, Australia, Malaysia, Thailand, South Africa, Erythria, Greece, Belgium, France, England, Germany, Colombia, Spain, Japan, the Netherlands, China, and Slovenia.

"The climbing path to Mount Ijen is the most eagerly awaited, as it is one of the extremes in Asia, with an altitude of 1,871 meters above sea level (masl) or exceeds the Genting Highland climb in Malaysia`s Tour de Langkawi, which is some 1,500 masl. Everything will be all-out on the Ijen hill, so it is very exciting," he stated.

Meanwhile, Banyuwangi District Head Abdullah Azwar Anas explained that the cycling race, as part of the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) race series, will cover four stages, with a route covering 599 kilometers.

According to Anas, Banyuwangi consistently held ITdBI, and this year, it will be the seventh edition as a form of commitment by the regional government to contribute to Indonesia in organizing international events.

"We hope that this event would highlight the positive aspects about Indonesia to the world," he noted.

In addition, he remarked that this event boosted tourism, with the arrival of domestic and foreign delegates and cycling enthusiasts.

"The Tour de Ijen naturally raises public awareness of the Ijen Crater as a superior destination, with a global blue flame phenomenon," Anas stated.

The Banyuwangi regent also noted that the riders will be invited to explore the beautiful panorama of Bumi Blambangan to race against the extreme challenges of Mount Ijen. All routes are complete, starting from rural, plantation, and mountains, to beaches.

Reporting by Masuki M Astro
Editing by Bustanuddin

Reporter: Antara
Editor: Andi Abdussalam
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