Karl Platt and teammate Urs Huber are eyeing a win at next week’s Tankwa Trek at Kaleo Guest Farm.
The two are motivated to defend their title and will be up against stronger opposition than last year.
Now an International Cycling Union (UCI)-graded event, the fifth edition has drawn some of the world’s biggest mountain bike racing stars, many of them using the race as a preparation event ahead of the Cape Epic.
Platt and Huber are also the defending Cape Epic champions and Tankwa Trek will be their first race together since the TransAlp, last July.
The well-drilled pair will be joined by their Bulls stablemates, Tim Boehme and Simon Stiebjahn.
“Tankwa Trek will be a mini-Cape Epic for us. We are taking it really seriously, not just the riders, but the whole support crew too,” said Platt.
Leading the South African challenge are Nico Bell and Gawie Combrinck.
They were fourth last year at their first attempt and will know what to expect this time around as they challenge for the podium.
The women’s division is packed with strong teams, all in pursuit of the generous prize money, UCI rankings points and Cape Epic preparation.
Former Tankwa Trek winner Ariane Lüthi will be using the race to get to know her new Cape Epic teammate, Adelheid Morath.
They will be wary of Esther Süss and Jennie Stenerhag, while Candice Lill and Vera Adrian will also be daily and overall podium contenders.