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Swartberg100 Gravel Fondo’s
April 27 @ 7:00 am - 3:00 pm
The Swartberg100 Gran Fondo starts and ends in Prince Albert, arguably one of the most attractive Karoo towns in South Africa, it covers 170 km of which there are 3 gravel sectors covering 79 km. The final climb is over the gravel Swartberg Pass, a relentless climb of 28 km, the last 9.8 km being on gravel with gradients of 16% in places.
The Swartberg100, in true South African tradition, will be one of the toughest Gran Fondo’s in the world. We have created a course that goes back to the days of old when mountain passes were all gravel and brave cyclists climbed them on single speed bikes weighing in at 16 kg. A course that allows us to pit our modern training knowledge and technology against an old foe, a road surface that isn’t always friendly.
Choose your weapon carefully for this race, too much rubber could slow you down, too little could make the gravel sectors a lot tougher. Watch those gears, not enough top end and you’ll spin out on the flats, not enough bottom end and you’ll be walking up those 16% inclines. – Bike choice is key…
The Gran Fondo
– 170 kilometres, 3000 metres of ascent, 79 kilometres of gravel in 3 Sectors.
- The last 2 km to the Swartberg summit is at an average gradient of 12%
– The summit is at the 150km mark, from there it’s a nail-biting 20km descent into Prince Albert
– The start gun goes at 7am (Sunrise)
– Cut off at the end is at 5pm
– If you don’t make water-point 3 by 2:10 pm the sweep bus will take you home.
- Finishing this race is an achievement.
The Medio Fondo
– 53.75km and 389 metres of ascent.
- A flat fast route an average rider will easily complete in 2.5 hours.
Staffetta is Italian for “relay race”, we thought we would keep to the Italian theme, after all it was the Italians who came up with the idea of a Gran Fondo, a fun race, a great challenge for all riders, professional to amateur to enjoy together, back in 1970 in the small town of Cesenatico, home of Marco Pantani.
Swartberg Pass provides a great challenge for e-bike riders, spectacular climbing over 65km on a morning outing on your e-bike. You can race it, but you will need to conserve battery power and plan your tactics well. Or … you can just ride it and enjoy the scenery in a safe environment with medics, marshalls and water points to help you on your way.
65km and 1900m of climbing