Ladies in Red – Cape Pioneer Trek Stage 2 Recap

With the gusting wind showing no signs of abating just yet we knew it was going to be a tough day in the office despite it being a relatively ‘short’ stage.
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Photograph By Zoon Cronje

The racing began with a brutally steep weave through the residential roads of the Bay with kicks of up to 20 per cent! We then zig-zagged along the coastline on a mix of trail, jeep track and tarmac – all good yes but the trail surfaces were a real challenge with sand and rocks comprising the terrain.

After going under N2 we barreled along some farm roads and single-tracks, through mostly cattle and game farms. Riding on district roads was very limited compared to yesterday and the numerous small river crossings caused a bit of laughter here and there. Particularly when Jenna plunged into a rather deep and dodgy-looking one and had to rinse her shoes off in a cleaner stream in the Bergsig Game Farm.

There were a number of short but very punchy climbs on the route, along with great and sometimes technical single-track in the last 10km before heading through town to the finish at Milkwood Primary.

While stage 2 may have been shorter than yesterday it was much tougher owing to the wind and testing terrain. Looking back it wasn’t the elevation gain but rather the slow rolling surfaces and wind that wreaked havoc with the field, resulting in small clusters of groups working together to save energy.

The Dryland hospitality has been superb thus far. It’s by far the best of any of the events Jenna and I have done. Snacks and drinks are always available and the locals and foreigners mix in a relaxed atmosphere in the race village. The volunteers and organisers are also constantly mingling with cyclists and the general vibe is just awesome. The communities have real bought-in to the race ethos with personal, family-like atmosphere.

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