The Absa Cape Epic mountain bike cycle race which has started at Knysna for the past 5 years, will for the first time this year begin in the Mother City.
Organises and racers held their breath when it seemed that the fires on Table Mountain earlier this week would affect plans to start the race on the slopes of the iconic landmark mountain.
However, late yesterday afternoon the nod was given and all is set for what cyclists are calling the "dash through the ash" - the race Prologue (1st stage) tomorrow (Saturday 21 March 2009).
Today it's all about registration of the 1200 cyclists in 600 teams, course practice and race briefing.
The Cape Epic is aptly named: it is an epic race through some of the Cape's most beautiful countryside. The seven stages take in Greyton, Oak Valley (near Grabouw), and finish at the Lourensford Estate Somerset West next Saturday. In total, the course covers 685 km with a total altitude gain of 14 663m.
For all race details, news, a leaderboard and live updates to see how participants are faring throughout the gruelling event, check out the official Absa Cape Epic website.
Supporting a cyclist during the race? If you require accommodation anywhere along the route during the Cape Epic, go to Portfolio's website for benchmarked accommodation options, or contact us directly for assistance and reservations.