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The Absa Cape Epic is an annual mountain bike race held right here in South Africa in the Western Cape. It has grown in popularity and has such global recognition that it has become the most televised mountain bike race in the world with the route changing every year. This year we are proud to have Hermanus (the hometown of FinGlobal) as the starting point of the 2019 Absa Cape Epic for both Stage 1 and Stage 2!
 

The Cape Epic attracts local and global talent

 
The Absa Cape Epic, which was first staged in 2004, only allows 650 teams to ride the race and the race must be completed by both members of a two- person team. This year the race will take place from 17 to 24 March and promises to be as challenging as ever with leading amateur and professional mountain bikers from South Africa and all over the world taking part. The race usually covers approximately 700 kilometres and lasts 8 days and to qualify for a finish, both members of each team must stay together for the entire duration of the race. The Absa Cape Epic is classed as hors catégorie by the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI). This official status makes it a top attraction on all professional mountain bike racer’s calendars.

 

 

Full service: Just focus on riding

The Absa Cape Epic has another claim to fame being the largest full-service mountain bike race in the world! This means that all the riders have to think about is their riding, everything else is taken care of from water, isotonic carbohydrate drinks, race nutrition and trained medical staff with a fully-equipped race hospital in situ at the various Race Villages. At the end of the day, riders relax in single-person tents with mattresses and enjoy hot showers after the exhausting day’s racing.

 

Not surprisingly the cost of entering such a well-organised race is high, and this year the price tag is placed at R82 900! Even with such a high entry price the race has been oversubscribed every year since its start with early-bird entries selling out within minutes! Many South African expats who live overseas return for the race, finding the entry price more affordable with the exchange rate in their favour.

 

2019 Absa Cape Epic Route

 

If you’re a South African expat returning to race, you’ll be delighted to know that the 2019 route is magnificent, taking you from the slopes of Table Mountain to the shoreline of the Southern Coast to the famous Cape Winelands and the high mountains of the Western Cape. This year the race will cover 624 kilometres with a climb of 16650 metres – similar to riding up 2 Table Mountains every day for a week!

 

Prologue: Sunday, March 17
Start and finish location: University of Cape Town
Distance: 21km

 

Stage 1: Monday March 18
Start and finish location: Hermanus
Distance: 112Km

 

The beautiful seaside town of Hermanus is proud to once again be hosting the Absa Cape Epic and this part of the races is billed as “Heaven and Back to Earth” with the riders being taken through some of the most beautiful parts of the countryside including the Hemel en Ararde Valley, Rotary Drive, the La Vierge stairs and the Paddocks.

 

In 2017, when Hermanus previously played host to the event, Hermanus mountain bikers Claude Tyers and his teammate Mathew Browne were the first two locals to cross the line on Day 1. If you are watching the race in Hermanus, make sure you visit and enjoy the renowned restaurants in and around the town as well as the leading wine estates that line the Hemel-en Aarde Valley! Look out for the spectator point at Creation Wines – which won the prize for the best viewing experience in 2017!

 

 

Stage 2: Tuesday March 19
Start location: Hermanus
Finish location: Oak Valley
Distance: 86km

 

Stage 3: Wednesday 20 March
Start location: Oak Valley
Finish location: Oak Valley
Distance: 103km

 

Stage 4: Thursday 21 March
Start location: Oak Valley
Finish location: Oak Valley
Distance: 43km

 

Stage 5: Friday 22 March
Start location: Oak Valley
Finish location: Stellenbosch
Distance: 100km

 

Stage 6: Saturday 23 March
Start location: Stellenbosch
Finish location: Stellenbosch
Distance: 89km

 

Stage 7: Sunday 24 March
Start location: Stellenbosch
Finish location: Val de Vie
Distance: 70km

 

This is the grand finale with the riders entering the Val de Vie Estate with some flat kilometres to enjoy after many backbreaking climbs and descents in the race before joyously crossing the finish line!

 

If you are a South African living abroad returning to take part in the 2019 Cape Epic, or following it from abroad, and would like to know more about how you can maximise your finances through financial emigration, accessing your South African retirement annuity and our tailor-made tax solutions for South Africans around the world, contact FinGlobal today.