KwaZulu-Natal mountain bikers have until midnight on Sunday to get their entries in for the Bestmed Ballito Expedition, which takes place near the North Coast town on November 8.
According to Wynand de Villiers of ASG Events, organisers were expecting almost 800 riders to turn out for the second edition of the event.
“The entries are definitely up from last year’s inaugural event. We had a total of 350 entries and we surpassed that figure with two weeks to go.”
De Villiers said the route-building team had put a lot of effort into the course to ensure rideability throughout for both the 25km and 50km participants.
“The Expedition takes place over undulating terrain with short, sharp climbs, but there are no long ascents.
“My favourite part of the route is also the furthest part, where we’ve got a few lovely forest sections and a wonderful long descent off the escarpment into the valley back to Ballito.”
He said what set the event apart were the breathtaking views inland and over the ocean, as riders traversed the forests, cane fields, wide open plains and technical descents.
“With the KZN humidity, the waterpoints are a big focus, with lots to eat and drink. Our infrastructure partner, Talisman, has done a lot to make these great.”
Riders roll out from the Sugar Rush Adventure Centre, just outside town.
“The venue is geared towards family with a quaint coffee shop, winery and some kids’ entertainment, so riders and their supporters can relax on the lush lawns after the hard racing is done.”
With a total prize purse of R10 000 up for grabs, De Villiers said it was more than worthwhile to make the expedition out of Durban and surrounding areas.
“We also have goodie bags for all our online entrants and medals for all finishers.”
He said by entering, riders would be doing their bit for the Cancer Association of South Africa, as R10 from every entry would be donated to the organisation.
Bestmed and their partners Incolab will also be offering free sunscreen to all participants as part of their skin cancer awareness drive.
Registration takes place at the Sugar Rush Clubhouse on the morning of the race.
Enter online at www.roag.co.za.