A short hop down the coast aboard the mighty bird, a bus shuttle inland and I’m back for my second PwC Great Zuurberg Trek just outside the Friendly City.
Zuurberg is a fairly unique event in that the organisers take care of everything for the riders.
Sounds like a cliché?
Well, first they collect your bike from your home and transport it to the event.
Then they collect you at the airport in Port Elizabeth and make sure your stay at the Zuurberg Mountain Inn is five star.
I have found this to be an event where you are pampered on an entirely different level.
On the racing front, I’m again teaming up with Dylan Rebello. The youngster has just turned 21 and, from the stories I hear of the party, it was a night to remember!
My partner from last year, Andrew Hill, is now my foe as he teams up with Adriaan Louw to form the TIB Insurance-Contego team.
They will surely be our strongest competition throughout the three-day race but, not to be discounted, are the Kargo Racing duo of Jurgens Uys and Marco Joubert.
All said and done, I’m looking forward to a fantastic race. Our first stage tomorrow is just short of 70km and takes in the Sundays River Valley, Hayterdale Trails and, the cherry on top, the ascent of the Zuurberg Pass to the finish line.
The second day retains its reputation as the queen stage and some tough climbing and rough surfaces make it likely that it will be the race decider for the overall.
The final stage is somewhat shorter, encompassing more of the incredible Hayterdale Trails while again finishing atop the pass.
But first we’ll be tucking into the famed Zuurberg Inn buffet. Maybe not too much as the pass has not gotten any shorter from last year.
Pop in tomorrow for an update of what went down.
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