The second Madibaz XCO Series will provide a further chance for riders in the Eden region to gain exposure to cross country racing when the first leg takes place next Sunday.
The aim of the series, which is based at the NMMU campus in George, is to assist in the development of cross country competitors in the region and will see further races taking place on June 10, August 27 and October 29.
The August leg will include an intervarsity division for top student riders from around the country.
Race director Jan Venter, of NMMU, said the cross country option was a better option to attract riders to the sport and filled a gap in the region’s calendar.
“While there are plenty of marathon races, there have been no cross country events of this nature so we wanted to create something for the riders.”
Venter said they had kept the fees down as an incentive to enter.
“It is R50 for children and R90 for adults and we are cautiously optimistic that we will see a rise in numbers this year.”
He added that they had attracted about 60 participants per race in the inaugural series and hoped to improve on that, thanks to a sponsorship from Old Mutual Private Wealth Management.
With laps of 5.1km for the older categories and 3.2km for those under 12, Venter said there was a nice mix.
“There are some technical areas, single-track and normal gravel roads.
“In the technical areas there are some challenging bits but we have created A and B lines to cater for everyone.”
He said the series champions would be determined by adding the points from riders’ top three finishes together.