Mountain bikers experience a piece of heaven at the Savanna Origin of Trails MTB Experience

Seen here: Kusaselihle Ngidi (Stellenbosch) in action during Stage 2 of the 2021 Savanna Origin of Trails MTB Experience.  Photo Credit:  Chris Hitchcock

The 8th annual Savanna Origin of Trails MTB Experience closed off on a high note in Stellenbosch on Sunday 28 

November 2021 with mountain bikers being treated to a piece of mountain biking heaven.

Affectionately dubbed the “MTB Party of the year”, the

is an individual 2-day MTB Stage Race that highlights the beauty and splendour of the City of Oaks. Over the two-day period mountain bikers were treated to a vast network of world-class and exclusive trails while celebrating the origin of SA mountain biking. 

“The Savanna Origin of Trails MTB Experience was the perfect way to close off what has been a roller-coaster of a year,” says Michael Meyer, Managing Director of Stillwater Sports and Founder of the event. “Outdoor enthusiasts got to enjoy two days out on the trails with family and friends doing what they enjoy most, mountain biking. Stellenbosch’s iconic trails did not disappoint, and we trust that each and every entrant rekindled their love for the sport, after being reminded why they ride.”

“The 2021 Savanna Origin of Trails MTB Experience lived up to its reputation of being SA’s on route MTB party of the year,” says Kavir Gangiah, Media, Sponsorship and Events Manager Distell Southern Africa. “We enjoyed getting outdoors, not racing but instead appreciating the trails, the scenery and the vibe with like-minded individuals. The Savanna Origin of Trails MTB Experience truly was an experience, and we’d like to thank each and every entrant for making it possible to host this exceptional event in 2021.” 

Spinning instructor Suzette Olivier (Somerset West) made her mountain bike racing debut by taking on the Savanna Origin of Trails MTB Experience Half Marathon. “This is my first mountain bike race ever,” says a very excited Olivier. “A friend of mine asked me three days ago whether I’d like her entry as she couldn’t take part due to injury. The Savanna Origin of Trails is a fantastic race. It’s hard, but it has great routes and scenery. I definitely want to come back next year.”

Albie de Waal (Stellenbosch) has taken part in the Savanna Origin of Trails a number of times, but this is the first year that he managed to beat his father (Andre) to the finish. “I train a lot with my dad and today’s the first time that I’ve managed to beat him,” laughs De Waal. “Today’s stage was very nice. I really like this event. Although the stage had two difficult hills, I really enjoyed the route. I’ll definitely enter this event every year.”

“This is my first time racing the Savanna Origin of Trails MTB Experience,” says Kusaselihle Ngidi (Stellenbosch). “I entered the event for the experience. Stage Two of the Marathon featured a good route and crossing the finish line first is a good feeling. The event features nice trails and good routes that are well marked.”

Karla Stumpf (Stellenbosch) made her Savanna Origin of Trails MTB Experience debut by taking on the Marathon. “I’m a first-year student and I entered the event because I thought the trails must be amazing to ride,” says Stumpf. “The event was amazing. I just entered to have fun, but then I saw that there were two women in front of me, so I chased and caught them. For me the downhills are the best part of the event. I definitely want to come back next year.” 

Stage 2 of the Savanna Origin of Trails MTB Experience Marathon started with an undulated climb, followed by kilometers of smooth winding single- track. The beautiful Banhoek Valley was iconic to this stage, while the Klein Bethlehem single tracks were out of this world. MTBers got to Look forward to experiencing the biggest berms you will find in the Stellenbosch area. Farms that formed part of this route included DeMorgenzon, Bartinney Wines, Zeven Rivieren, Klein Bethlehem, Zorgvliet, Summercourt, Thelema and Tokara. The Half Marathon Route incorporated sections of this route and riders were in for a treat. 

EVENT INFORMATION:  2021 Savanna Origin of Trails MTB Experience 

Date:Saturday 27 and Sunday 28 November 2021
Festival Village:Stellenbosch High School
Format:Two-Day Stage Race for individual entrants
Categories, Distances & Entry Fee:Full Marathon Age:  18+
 Distance Day 1:  +-45km
 Distance Day 2:  +-40km
 Half Marathon Age:  18+
 Distance Day 1:  +-27km
 Distance Day 2:  +-22km

The entry fee included:

  • Finisher Technical Rider Tee
  • Finisher Medal
  • Race Number
  • Trail Access Fees
  • Spectacular on route experience
  • Access to world class routes that are usually not open to the public
  • A light breakfast pack with coffee on both days
  • A scrumptious lunch pack on both days
  • Complimentary drinks and refreshments
  • Well stocked water points (on route and in the race village)
  • Entertainment (on route and in the race village)
  • An impressive selection of gifts from our sponsors including Beet It Sport, Savanna and THIRSTI.

CHARITY SUPPORT:  The Savanna Origin of Trails proudly supports the Stellenbosch Trail Fund.  

PLEASE NOTE:  The event organisers did, at all times, adhere to Government Regulations regarding COVID-19.

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 For more information on the Savanna Origin of Trails MTB Experience please email or visit

 ISSUED BY:                    Newsport Media

 ON BEHALF OF:             Stillwater Sports 

 For further information contact Jacky McClean via email