The third Absa Cape Epic presented by adidas has kicked off this past weekend. At 7:15 on Saturday morning, 1,046 mountain bikers from 37 different countries embarked on their grueling and adventurous eight-day journey through the Western Cape. In just 8 days the 523 two-person teams will have to ride 921 kilometres and climb 16,605 meters before they reach the finish line in Spier next Saturday to deserve the honourable title of 'Cape Epic Finisher.'
Riders have travelled around the world to participate in the race, coming all the way from Canada, Brazil, Norway, China, and Australia. 282 teams are riding in the Men category, 19 in the Women, 61 in the Mixed and 161 in the Masters category for which the combined age of both team members must be 80 years or older. The youngest starter in the field is 18 years old; the most senior rider is 64. The female line up accounts for ten per cent of the total entrants.
Dual World Cup Champion Christoph Sauser and his team partner Silvio Bundi of team Specialized took the rainy first stage. They crossed the finish line in Saasveld after 4 hours, 41 minutes and 31 seconds in the saddle and with 9.5 minute lead over second placed team Stevens Racing with Christian Heule and Johannes Sickmueller. “That was a tough day,” Christoph Sauser said.
Follow all the Cape Epic action on Cyclingnewshere.