CAPE TOWN – The much-anticipated 2023 Piketberg Mountain Bike Challenge is taking place on 14 October at Org de Rac Organic Wine Estate on the outskirts of Piketberg, in the West Coast region.
This year’s event will also incorporate the West Coast Cycling Federation Mountain Bike Champs for all age categories
Trails and paths for this annual event include 60 km, 40 km and 20 km mountain bike challenges, and a 5 km, 8km and 12km fun run. Registration will start at 06:00 on the day.
Mountain biking is hugely popular in this mountainous region and one can expect strong competition on the day.
However, the event also serves to promote cycling as a sport and to encourage beginners.
The day is also a wonderful, fun-filled occasion for the greater Piketberg community, with food and market stalls, jumping castles, and dancing events.
SACCSFIT will manage the fun run event and a recovery centre is available for the participants.
‘We’re expecting up to 200 cyclists from under 13 upwards, including 60 development cyclists from our participating schools on the West Coast and Piketberg Development Cycling Club,” says Mike Tippett, the Manager of the Nedbank Sports Trust Cycling Development Programme which is organising the event in partnership with Org de Rac Organic Wine Estate, West Coast Cycling and Bergrivier Tourism.
The Nedbank Sports Trust Cycling Development Programme has been funded by Nedbank since 2005, together with The Sports Trust.
The programme supplies bikes and supports the training and participation of up to 200 cyclists annually from 12 under-resourced high schools in the Boland, Cape Metro (predominantly the Cape Flats) and West Coast region.
‘The atmosphere and camaraderie at the Piketberg Mountain Bike Challenge is just incredible.
This year our influencer and sporting celebrity Letshego Zulu will be out there in the Nedbank colours participating in the challenge, meeting the community and enjoying the day,’ said Tobie Badenhorst, Head of Group Sponsorships and Cause Marketing at Nedbank.
The Mountain Bike Challenge started several years ago as a local community cycle race, hosted by Steynville Senior Secondary in Piketberg, which is one of the high schools participating in the Nedbank Sports Trust Cycling Development Programme.
The race has since developed into a highly popular event and festival on the West Coast calendar.
‘For our more experienced cyclists in the programme, the Mountain Bike Challenge offers cyclists an opportunity to be selected for the Western Cape cycling team which will participate in the South African Cycling Championships early next year,’ Tippett explains.