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Mountain Bike Tours in South Africa

Team Articles

Crater Cruise 2005  
Why Subaru Sponsorship
 
Subaru committed to the outdoors 

Race Report

Read our day to day account of our ride in the Cape Epic 2006 race report 
Also checkout True Confessions of a Cape Epic Junkie, the story from our Subaru support crew.

Training & preparation

We will be running two Polar heart rate based training programs. The first a 12 hour 12 week program from October to end December and then a 15 hour 16 week program from Jan 2006 up to the EPIC.... read more...

Bikes & Equipment

This year we will both be on the same make of bike. After Albert's success with his RDS 9.0 last year we are both riding a Raleigh RDS 9.0 in 2006.... read more...

Video and photos

Click here for video downloads of our training races and other pics.

Cape Epic Pages

Check out links to our other Cape Epic pages for 2006 and 2007.
 

True Confessions of a Cape Epic Junkie 

Hi, I'm Belinda and I'm a Cape Epic Junkie. (This is where you reply. "Hi, Belinda.")

After 2005, I kept telling myself I could stop any time I wanted. I could resume a normal life. But when The Lovie and his faithful partner (affectionately known as Bundy) considered, for a brief moment, NOT entering the great untamed African race again in 2006; my palms went all sweaty and my tongue started sticking to my palate. I had difficulty breathing and felt dizzy and disorientated. I longed for the thrill of the finish at Spier; the heady laughter of Moyo; the spectacle of many muscled legs in lycra shorts . . . and the sight of The Lovie, his face encrusted with dust and snot, sporting a smile as wide as the Grand Canyon after a successful Epic finish.

The terrible truth about my addiction is out. I'm absolutely hooked on the Epic. I love training camps, I love pasta meals, I love XTR, I love tubeless tyres. I never tire of buying energy bars and baking teeny-tiny fruit-cakes. I can't do without daily heart-rate updates and training reports; I can't do without cold-water-Omo and Vanish spray and I fear I will never never again be able to walk past a zip-lock bag without buying it. Sometimes, in darker moments, I even lie to bank tellers to get them to hit me with a couple of extra baggies. You might call me a junkie; but I like to think of myself as a believer.

So you can imagine my excitement when I was invited to come along as support crew for the 2006 Epic. The dates were fated to coincide with my school holidays and I figured that if I can fend off 175 crazed teenagers every day of my life; riding shotgun for The Lovie and Bundy would be just the R&R I was after. Wisely, I enlisted the support of my brother (herein after known as The Bro) to help drive the sponsored Subaru and carry the toolboxes, bike stands, emergency wheels, cooler boxes and assorted other s#*t - I might be a believer, but there ARE limits!

Supporting an Epic team is, well, epic. There are water points to be navigated; rehydration drinks to be mixed; sandwiches and hot-cross-buns to be prepared; bacon-rolls to be bought; bar-ones to be administered; transacts to be applied; bikes to push; tents to secure, laundromats to seize; tumble-drier tactics to be discussed; riders to cheer; parking spots to be found; tools to carry; brake-pads to buy; mud pits to fend off; water bottles to be filled and all this just on day 1! When The Lovie told me how hectic it had been the previous year; I smiled quietly to myself and giggled inwardly at his ineptitude at performing the everyday tasks of a wife. Even as I write this, I am cringing, but I was wrong. It really is very hectic and The Bro and I had to run around a great deal to make sure that our team had everything we could possibly provide in order to make their task of riding just a little easier. It was made worthwhile by the desperate gratitude they showed - especially when we brought them food at the end of each day's ride. Breathless as they were; they never failed to whoop and cheer at the sight of the daily fare - from bakbroode to boerie rolls.

The wibe (if you know Mike Mike you'll know that this is the true pronunciation of vibe) in Race Willage (Mike Mike, again) is incomparable. We found ourselves eagerly waiting for The Lovie and Bundy as well as many other teams; anxious to hear their report of the day's events. The Space Cadets never failed to amuse with their tales of maniacally having to beat any girls that they came across . . . The WeaselDoos and Connor's search for the perfect cup of tea struck a particular chord with me; and of course, "Where's Pete?" became a mantra for us all. A guy in a Vespa jersey asked me to marry him when I gave him a hot-cross-bun at the water point on day one; and although I had to turn him down, we became firm friends as the week wore on.

In the words of The Bro, "The face of extreme sport is not a pretty one", and we saw some horrible, horrible sights. The laundromat in Mossel Bay would have to count among these. I don't doubt that every Speed Queen in the joint is currently out of order; and will never be quite the same again. Epic partners nursing each other's saddle areas, is an image I will never be able to drive from my mind. The daily parade of the limping, wincing, aching riders determined to fight another day; is testament to the true commitment and effort of will that it requires to take on this race. Pretty it may not be; but awe-inspiring it sure is.

The whole experience from Knysna, to Greyton to Spier - and everywhere in-between - is one great whirlwind of a high from start to finish. For spectators, the water points and start and finish areas are an obvious attraction; and being welcomed in all the beautiful towns along the route was an experience we'll never forget. Very Going Nowhere Slowly. Teaching my six-year-old niece to scream "Go Christoff Sauser!" at the top of her voice on Franschoek pass is something I take great pride in having done. Seeing the sparkly clean kit from day one drying on the lawn in Riversdale inspired me to write to the Omo mailbag. No, really.

Cape Epic entry fee: R 5 600. Water from the Powerade vendors: R8 (!!) a piece! adidas branded Epic merchandise: a lot. And the sight of The Lovie, his face encrusted with dust and snot, sporting a smile as wide as the Grand Canyon after another successful Epic finish - Priceless.

   
 

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