The province of Flemish Brabant will have a permanent mountain bike route by the end of 2021. And not just one: the Marathonroute Frans Claes is no less than 136 km long and has almost 2,000 meters of altitude. Ideal for the sporty mountain biker who wants a nice challenge.

This new signposted mountain bike route runs through 11 towns and municipalities: Leuven, Bertem, Kortenberg, Tervuren, Overijse, Huldenberg, Oud-Heverlee, Bierbeek, Boutersem, Lubbeek and Holsbeek and makes a loop through the Sonian Forest, the Meerdaal Forest and the Hageland.

The official start of the course is at the Philipssite in Leuven, although you can choose your own starting and finishing point. The route is named after Frans Claes, Leuven’s top (marathon) mountain biker who gets high marks at international races. Last October, he and his teammate Jens Schuermans achieved a very honorable 11th place in his fourth Absa Cape Epic in South Africa. Jens finished 18th at the Olympic Games in Japan.

Needless to say, the new route was tested and approved by Frans Claes. “I am convinced that it is quite a challenge for young and old. I myself have experienced the route as a ride that is characterized by its diversity of trails and is doable in one or more days for any mountain biker.” The Marathon route can be found on the Sport Vlaanderen website.

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