Former solo winners Urs Huber and Karl Platt will aim for the team title at the Du Toit Tankwa Trek three-day mountain bike race that starts on Friday.
The race takes place in the Koue Bokkeveld region of the Western Cape and covers a total distance of 265km with 5 250 metres of climbing.
Stage one is over 89km with 1 900 metres of ascent while stage two covers 87km with over 2 200 metres of climbing – including the formidable Merino Monster ascent.
The final stage on Sunday is a 78km leg, but with an 11km neutral zone, making it a total of 89km with 1 150 metres of elevation.
In addition to Germany’s Platt and Switzerland’s Huber, the start list is packed with powerful pairings such as the Spur-Specialized duo of James Reid (RSA) and Howard Grotts (USA), Team Telkom’s Johann Rabie (RSA) and HB Kruger (RSA), Team NAD’s Gawie Combrinck (RSA) and Nico Bell (RSA), Team USN Purefit’s Waylon Woolcock (RSA) and Darren Lill (RSA) and Thule TIB’s Tyronne White (RSA) and Andrew Hill (RSA).