Stage 1 of the Absa Cape Epic is traditionally the stage that delivers the biggest shock, separating the well-prepared from the rest. In 2018 that’s expected to continue with riders tackling a 110km haul around the ruggedly scenic Breede River Valley. To celebrate this visit in March 2018 and to give non-Cape Epic entrants a sample of what the riders will be faced with, the McGregor Winery Race2Nowhere 1-day Challenge has been established.
On Saturday 9 December 2017, mountain bikers will be able to tackle the 112km Epic Challenge or the 68km Mini Epic, starting and finishing in the hamlet of McGregor, a 250km drive from Cape Town.
Organised by the same passionate team that’s staged six successful editions of the three-day Ride2Nowhere stage race each September, the inaugural Race2Nowhere promises to deliver exceptionally high standards, both in terms of on-and-off the bike experience.
Because the area is by no means flat, both distances of the Race2Nowhere will include a fair dose of climbing, with the Epic Challenge distance at 2650 metres and the Mini Epic at 1550 metres. The longer event will be a welcome addition to the calendar for those disappointed at the demise of the classic South African ‘Ultra-marathon’; and the organisers have confirmed the Race2Nowhere will become an annual event.
Because the routes are not open to the public and traverse mostly privately owned farm land, the Race2Nowhere offers a rare opportunity for those preparing for the 2018 Absa Cape Epic to become familiar with the terrain and conditions, as well as the surfaces and gradients they’ll face on the third, fourth and fifth days of the event.
“Kilometres 30-80 follow the exact same route of the ABSA Cape Epic stage, which includes the Takkap, Skid, Bones and Skuilkrans climbs! Then there after there are other sections of the Race2Nowhere route that touch on the Epic stage route,” said race director, Eulogy van Dyk.
“However, the race is not only aimed at Cape Epic entrants; we also want to invite people that would like to experience some of the Ride2Nowhere route if they did not have a chance to ride the event in September.
“It really is proper mountain biking on ungroomed trails, a good combination of climbing, descending and singletrack fun, with magnificent views over the McGregor Valley,” added Van Dyk.
McGregor is a popular destination for those seeking a tranquil breakaway and has a high level of credibility in its hospitality sector. As with the Ride2Nowhere, the whole community will play a role in the successful staging of the inaugural 1-day event on 9 December.
Article from TREAD, by Sean Badenhorst