The 2019 edition of the Cape Pioneer Trek will see some defining changes to its route and stoppage points.
The race organisers claimed earlier this week that this year’s race had been their best so far.
However, they aren’t resting on their laurels and they said next year’s race would “once again head into the unknown”.
The Mossel Bay prologue would be fairly similar, they said, but with added single-track and fewer road sections. Riders would experience the cliff-hanging paths of St Blaize, which should deliver diverse scenery.
Stage one, however, has received a complete overhaul with a new route laid out back to Mossel Bay to limit previous tarred sections.
Race director Henco Rademeyer said they would be adding freshly developed single and jeep tracks leading towards the Outeniqua Mountains.
They would also be replacing the last 10km into George with “something far more exciting”, Rademeyer said.
The Louvain Guest Farm is set to make its return to the route, which will give riders a new crossing over the Outeniquas.
The race venue for the stage has reportedly been upgraded since the last visit, with new accommodation and different tracks.
Here the riders will be situated deep in the Karoo for “at least one night”.
“We want riders to experience a really remote race venue,” Rademeyer said, “a place far removed from the hustle and bustle of a large town or city.”
Leaving Louvain, riders then tackle the infamous Kammanassie Pass, but with a “milder approach next year”.
There will once again be a Swartberg mountaintop finish on stage five. Rademeyer said they prided themselves on being the “only mountain-bike stage race” to offer such a finish in SA.
Stage five will be the queen stage, before riders take on the Chandelier Game Reserve and Ostrich Farm on the sixth and final stage, which will be shortened.
Although traversing the same area, the ride on the final stage is expected to be “completely different”.
Entries for the race open on December 8.