It’s almost epic time

The 12th edition of the Absa Cape Epic will take place from 15 to 22 March 2015 over 739km and including 16 000m of climbing. Local and international mountain bikers will tackle the demanding eight-day adventure through the Western Cape region in South Africa. The race will start at the University of Cape Town, with a time-trial prologue, and finish at Meerendal Wine Estate in Durbanville.

The Absa Cape Epic must be completed by both members of a two-person team and the route changes every year. It is the most televised mountain bike stage race in the world and the only eight-day mountain bike stage race classed as hors catégorie by the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI).

Qhubeka is proud to be an official charity partner of the Absa Cape Epic and we’re thrilled to introduce you to the teams who will be riding for us:

From South Africa, we have two teams: Shawn Boshoff, partnering with Graham Cronje, and then Bryan Versfeld and Nielen van de Vyver (see pics below) who are tackling the race because, as Nielen says, “The Epic is all about dedication, power of will and proving that you can be better than you think you can be.” He adds that supporting Qhubeka is about practical charity – “Teaching a man to fish instead of just feeding him. By ‘earning’ your keep, the whole lesson of life is taught, whilst helping people in need,” he says (Qhubeka bicycle recipients earn their bicycles by working through a Qhubeka project to improve their academic results, the environment or their community). Keep up to date with them by following @bryanvers on Twitter.

Bryan, Nielen, Absa Cape Epic Bryan, Nielen, Absa Cape Epic

From the USA, we have Malcolm Dunkeld and Edward Bird and, riding for World Bicycle Relief, Team Hoosier Old Boys (riders Andy Ording and Todd Winget). Andy and Todd are back for their third Epic as teammates. Todd says his best result is not a specific race placing, but their fundraising success for World Bicycle Relief and the Christel House Academy in Ottery. Wishing Andy and Todd another great result!

Hailing from Canada are Alex Stieda and Matt Whitley. Alex is the first North American to wear the yellow jersey in the Tour de France. He and Matt hope to raise funds for the Edmonton Epilepsy Association and World Bicycle Relief to help healthcare workers have better access to patients suffering from epilepsy in Zambia. You can support their fundraising efforts here.

From New Zealand, Glenn Wright and Martyn Reesby will be riding together, and from Spain, Carlos Mendez and Marc Sabate Rius (pictured below). Marc says he’s riding for Qhubeka because it’s about children, education and cycling. “It fits perfectly with my lifestyle,” he says. “I’ll never let the child inside of me go and I’ve got two daughters of my own, Maria (15) and Paula (11), so I do everything for children. Education makes society grow and improves the quality of it, and then sports are my passion. Cycling allows you to free your mind and get good ideas while pedaling.”

Mark Sabate Rius, Absa Cape Epic Mark Sabate Rius, Absa Cape Epic
Qhubeka is also excited to have four teams from Dimension Data riding for us. Dimension Data is a leading ICT company that has chosen to support Qhubeka and is doing an incredible job through motivated employees like Louise Michelson.

The first of the Dimension Data Epics teams comprises Ant Daniels and Rogan Moore, who have thus far raised over R60 000 through their Epic ride for Qhubeka (check out their fundraising page here). Dimension Data is the technology Partner to the 2015 Absa Cape Epic, and challenged Ant and Rogan to raise R50,000 for Qhubeka in return for an entry to the race. They’ve already exceeded their goal, so well done to both men!

The next teams are Lourens Oosthuizen and Wesley Stoltz, and  Andrew Steer and Ant Dyboll. Both teams are also hoping to raise R50 000 for Qhubeka, so please support their efforts on their respective fundraising pages here (Lourens Oosthuizen and Wesley Stoltz) and here (Andrew Steer and Ant Dyboll)

Finally, Michael Abendanon and Graham Parker are also looking to raise R50 000 for Qhubeka as one of the Dimension Data teams. Take a look at their fundraising page here and help them hit their goal – they are already over 50% of the way there!

We’ll keep you up to date on our Absa Cape Epic riders as the race draws near and during the event itself, but if you’re already interested in riding and fundraising for Qhubeka in 2016, please email Gaylene (events@qhubeka.org) for more info.

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