Riders in the PwC Great Zuurberg Trek mountain bike race will again have access to an internet service with the extension of a sponsorship by Port Elizabeth-based company Igen.
One of the strengths of the three-day race is that it provides some spectacular scenery in remote regions, including the Addo Elephant National Park, but this can affect internet connectivity.
“As a boutique event, we realise that it is an important to help our participants stay in touch with the outside world,” said race director Brad Jackson of Mountain Events.
The sponsorship, he added, was also essential for the organisers as the event interacted with the public through its digital and social platforms throughout.
Jackson said an effective internet infrastructure paved the way for media communications and offered services like live timing.
He said Igen, short for Internet Generation, made use of long range, high speed wireless links to provide internet services in the most remote locations.
Igen sales representative Linda van Huyssteen said they would repeat the services they had offered in their first year of sponsorship in 2016.
“The speeds we gave them last year included a 20MB uncapped line for the organisers and media,” she said.
“The cyclists also received uncapped data, but at a lower bandwidth.”
Van Huyssteen said they had received positive responses from the riders last year when they visited the race to ensure their package was on line.
She added they were able to provide the service because of towers they had installed in the area for the Zuurberg Mountain Village – one of their clients.
“Everything we need for the sponsorship is there as we put everything in place last year, so basically it is just a case of turning on a switch.”
Operating as wireless and internet communication service providers, Igen cover a large area in the Eastern Cape, from East London in the east to Stilbaai in the west.
The PwC Great Zuurberg Trek will take place from May 26 to 28.