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Cape Epic expands on road

For 2006, the organisers of the Cape Epic mountain bike stage race in South Africa have announced the expansion of their concept to an unprecedented dual stage race for mountain bikers and road cyclists. Roadies can now ride approximately 1200 kilometres under African skies, through the unspoilt nature of the Western Cape and over some of the most magnificent mountain passes in South Africa.

The seven-stage road race will start on April 23, 2006, a day after the mountain bike race, and end seven days later on April 29 at Spier Wine Estate. The world's first dual stage race will share stage locations so that a town will host the road cyclists on one night, and the mountain bikers on the next, or vice versa. On one of the middle stages, both road cyclists and mountain bikers will be hosted in the same town. The final stage will end for all participants at the Spier Wine Estate near Cape Town.

Due to the enormous demand and the 4-hour sell-out of Cape Epic 2005, a portion of the 2006 entries will be awarded through a public lottery system. The remainder will be allocated to wildcard entries, corporate entries, partners and sponsors as well as reserved volunteer entries from Cape Epic 2005. Prospective entrants must 'Apply to Ride' the Cape Epic 2006 before the end of May 2005 by paying a non-refundable ZAR 20 fee when registering online. A hundred percent of this 'Apply to Ride' fee will be donated to the Bicycling Empowerment Network (BEN) that works to alleviate poverty in Africa through the promotion of cycling as a means of transport.

After Tuesday, June 14, 2005, successful applicants to ride will be randomly selected in a lottery and invited to enter the race via email. In order to confirm their start place, the teams must pay the full registration fee before Friday, July 15, 2005.

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