Last year, Dreyer finished the gruelling 1 000km single-stage race to Diemersfontein Wine Estate in Wellington in just under three days and a mere 13 minutes behind overall winner Heinrich Visser.
“There’s been a lot of pressure about the competition between the guys and the girls since last year,” she told In the Bunch. “I would rather not focus too much on that.
“In a long race such as this, there are so many variables and factors to consider when riding, other than competition. First and foremost, I would like to improve on my time and the rest will fall into place.”
Dreyer, who won the Wines2Wales mixed category with her husband Martin recently, as well as the 36One MTB Challenge in April; says this race will pose different challenges.
“You could feel at your fittest, but you’ll only know how you’ll cope as the race goes on. There are such unknown conditions along the way and there’s no knowledge of how our bodies will react.
“It’s such a different type of racing. It will be important to pace yourself against the conditions.
“How your body holds together, will determine the progress you make.”
The 37-year-old hoped the weather conditions would play into her hands.
“One of the defining factors last year was the heat. You don’t really realise how hot it gets in the Free State, and I feel like I managed it quite well.
“It can make it more challenging for riders in general when the sun is absolutely baking down, but living in KZN, I’m used to hot, humid conditions.
“It might be in a different part of the country, but I’m hoping the heat will favour my chances.”
Although the Pietermaritzburg resident generally prefers climbing, she feels the flat route will neutralise the playing field during the race.
“It is rather the conditions and circumstances that will be decisive. The ability to not sleep too much and getting that extra edge to better your time will be much more important.
“I will be riding on my own most of the way, and hopefully that will allow me to focus on what I need to do,” she added.