Cannondale Factory Racing’s Manuel Fumic and Henrique Avancini are targeting maximum spoils when they compete in the Cape Epic, which takes place from March 18 to 25.
The German/Brazilian pair, who won two stages and wore the yellow zebra jersey on four successive days last year before succumbing to mechanical problems, said they were aiming to ride “smarter and to our strengths”.
“The goal for us, of course, is the overall podium,” Fumic said. “We need to see how it goes over the days, but I think this year’s Cape Epic will become really tactical.
“There are so many new teams and big names and it’s not easy to single out any particular threat, but it will sure make for some good and intense racing.”
The pair, who are both national XCO champions in their respective countries, complement each other well, Avancini said.
“Last year was a good learning process for us,” he said. “I believe Manny [Fumic] and I are going to be in good shape.
“We’ve ridden well together in the past and we know each other well. Last year we had some good results and it would be great to be in the mix again on the GC.”
Avancini expects an aggressive race. “It’s a route that suits the endurance riders a lot better than us, so the race pace is probably going to be even more aggressive than last year,” he said.
“There’s also Jaroslav Kulhavy and Howard Grotts, who can never be written off either.