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 -

Friday, 5 July 2013

Daily Report - 5th July

After the arrival of Robbie McIntosh at Diemersfontein this afternoon, there are six riders still out on the trail. All of them are currently in the Breede River section of the trail and if things go according to plan, they should all be home by the end of the weekend. The only thing that can really slow them down now is rain but Robbie left Trouthaven in the pouring rain this morning and still managed to get through Stettynskloof - so it seems the pull of the blanket is strong enough.

Thinking about that blanket tonight will be Eric and Gaeren, they are spending the night at Trouthaven. Eric should have a bit more spring in his legs after a short day today but his full Kasra belly may slow him down... That would be a good thing for Gaeren, who doubled up again, this time from Montagu and will no doubt be feeling the effects of three long doubles over the last few days. But the end is near now and only Stettynskloof stands between them and those blankets.

Not far behind them in Montagu are the sweepers, Leon, Andries, Chris and Julia. They completed a successful double from Rouxpos today and are probably getting ready for a big night out in Montagu tonight, it is Friday after all. If they don't go too big tonight, then tomorrow they'll head to Kasra for the now famous lunch on their way to Trouthaven.

Great pic of Julia by Chris - heading into Montagu

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