The breathtaking beauty of UNESCO World Heritage Site Cappadocia and its iconic hot air balloons served as the stunning backdrop for Red Bull Dawn till Dusk, a 35-kilometer mountain bike race in Turkey's historical central Anatolia region.
The event on Oct. 23 was limited to a total of 300 people with the men and women riders tackling enduro, cross-country and downhill disciplines over the course of one arduous day of racing.
The four stages started in Güvercinlik Valley and ended at the centuries-old citadel of Uçhisar Castle perched on a rock spur with sweeping views of Cappadocia below.
The riders needed a backpack and equipment such as flasks, Allen rings, pumps and first aid kits for the all-day race with the field setting off as the famous hot air balloons rose with the morning sun.
They initially raced over 5 kilometers of mostly landing sections into the second Love Valley stage, which consisted of a single mainline for 3 kilometers and a track where mostly enduro and XC disciplines stood out.
The third Red Valley stage started at one of the highest points of Cappadocia for approximately 4 kilometers, comprising curved and technical paths, leading into the picturesque Çavuşin Castle.
With the riders battling hard to stay alert and strong after a long day's racing, they dug deep over steep descents and ramps to ride into the Uçhisar Castle finish where they enjoyed a well-earned rest.
Greg Callaghan won the men's race with 312 points ahead of Emir Melik Peker and Erol Uludağ as Ksenia Chernykh claimed the women's title with 227 points from Sibel Ocalberk and Binnur Özyılmaz.