The Arctic Race of Norway has become the first cycling race ever to use electric vehicles.
Reduce greenhouse gas emissions
The Arctic Race of Norway wishes to reduce its greenhouse gaz emissions. The climate change is the biggest challenge our world is facing and the Arctic area is without any doubt the most affected region. This statement leads the organizer to this decision and makes it even more relevant as the race is the Northernmost professional cycling one.
Given the distance between Northern Norway and their usual residences, the teams cannot join the start of the Arctic Race of Norway with their traditional buses. This is why vehicles are provided to each team, which gives the opportunity to take up the electrical challenge, with the support of Hyundai, official supplier of the Arctic Race of Norway.
Northern Norway facing the electrical challenge
When the Arctic Race of Norway team started working on this challenge, one of the main difficulties was the lack of charging stations in Northern Norway, a region that lags behind the rest of the country in terms of existing charging infrastructure. A collaboration with the local electric companies helped to solve the problem. Nordkraft, Lofotkraft, Hålogaland Kraft, Vesterålskraft and Trollfjord Kraft teamed up to fund a mobile charging station. Vesterålskraft CEO, Halvard Pettersen, really enjoyed the collaboration:
“We are far behind with the electrification of the car fleet in Northern Norway, primarily because there are not enough charging facilities. Through the initiative of Arctic Race of Norway, we have found a mobile solution for this year's ride, and we are continuing to develop permanent solutions.”
Through this project, the Arctic Race of Norway is contributing directly to the development of Northern Norway. The mobile charging stations used during the race are then made available for other sports and cultural events along the year.
A 100% electric ambition
Hyundai is also very delighted that the Arctic Race of Norway is working to become the first cycling race to use only electric vehicles. From 46 vehicles in 2019, the float should reach 60 in 2020 with an objective of 100% of the 120 vehicles becoming electric within three years.
“We have an ambition of zero emissions in our future fleet in Norway. That is why it is great to have the opportunity to help develop the infrastructure for this in Northern Norway through the Arctic Race of Norway”, says Marketing Director Christian Stenbo of Hyundai Motor Norway.
Christian Prudhomme, Director of the Tour de France, highlighted this ambition: “Proof, if ever it was needed, that the Arctic Race of Norway is much more than just a cycling race. This project is a significant step forward that goes to show how our sport is focused on the future and throwing its weight behind the transition to a more responsible and eco-friendly world. Like the Tour de France, the Arctic Race of Norway is merely a visitor to the landscapes it goes through and, therefore, it has a duty to protect this grandiose yet delicate natural environment.”