RIDERS from across the country will gather in Port Elizabeth this weekend for the start of the inaugural Investec PE to Plett mountain-biking race.
The technical stage race, which starts at Shark Rock Pier at 7am on Saturday, will take competitors along a 368km route from Port Elizabeth to Plettenberg Bay.
The race is being compared to the likes of the Cape Epic, Sani2C and other top events.
Some of the country's best mountain bikers, including Kevin Evans and Timo Cooper, together with PE's top exponents, are expected to hold very little back as they vie for honours in an event which has already sold out.
Port Elizabeth's golden girl, Anriette Schoeman, will also have her work cut out as she comes up against Sani2C champions Ischen Stopforth and Robin de Groot.
More than 400 riders will line up for the start which will take them through Settlers Park and onto the overnight stop at Gamtoos Ferry Hotel.
The second day is a just over 100km as they move through Jeffreys Bay and onto St Francis with the last 30km hugging the coast to Oyster Bay .
The next two days wind through the dairy farms of Tsitsikamma, Storms River and sections of the Otter Trail with the first riders expected to arrive at Central Beach in Plettenberg Bay at about noon next Tuesday.
More information: www.peplett.co.za