The Freedom Challenge

The Freedom Challenge Race Across South Africa is an "unsupported" non-stage mountain bike race of approximately 2,300 km across South Africa. While recent winners have won in around 11 days, the race cut-off is 26 days. The race starts in Pietermaritzburg in early-to-mid-June, and ends in Paarl near Cape Town. Temperatures are known to drop as low as minus-10 deg. Celsius. While there are periodic "support stations" which will feed and accommodate riders should they require, the race is unsupported in the sense that riders must carry their own clothing and equipment, are responsible for their own maintenance and navigation (without the aid of GPS), and there are no marshalls or safety officials on the course (Race monitoring is done by satellite tracking). Estimates of cumulative ascent are around 37,000 metres, and the highest point on the route is approximately 2,700 metres above sea level. See the following link for an introductory slideshow by Mike Roy -

Saturday, 7 July 2012

Die Wyn Trein maak klaar

There was much merriment and excitement when the Wyn Trein finally reached the end of the line at Diemersfontein this afternoon. This group formed in Rhodes and were formerly known as the Mega Bus, together with a few other riders. They lost some members along the way and the core of four stuck together. Although they didn't always ride together during the day, they regrouped at night over a few drinks. They sampled many different  beers and wines along the way and were an entertaining bunch who the support stations host all loved. They were briefly dropped by their fearless leader Gawie, when he left them at Trouthaven yesterday and pushed on into the night up Stettynskloof, in an attempt to beat the worsening weather. But today they are all reunited at the finish and drinking wine again.

Gawie started in Batch I and arrived this morning at -1h40 making his time for the journey 18d 19h 40min - and he rode the whole way on a belt-drive, singlespeed bike - nice one Gawie!

Casper and Charl also started in Batch I and finished their ride in 19d 8h 10min.

Sean started a day before them as part of the FC Extreme Triathlon group, so his finishing time is
20d 9h 10min. He now has a few days to rest before taking on the Berg River canoe marathon.

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