DESPITE a delayed start to the third stage of the Port Elizabeth to Plettenberg Bay mountain bike race yesterday due to bad weather, hundreds of riders came a step closer to the finish line in Plettenberg Bay today.
About 400 riders started this epic 368km four-day race in Port Elizabeth on Saturday and had made their way through three stages of the race by yesterday.
On day one the riders covered the route from Hobie Beach to the Gamtoos Valley.
"This was by far the toughest stage of the race with a lot of single track and many ups and downs," race organiser Mike Glover said.
On Sunday the riders set off through Kabeljous – passing through Jeffreys Bay, Paradise Beach, St Francis Bay, Oyster Bay and ending at the Brakkeduine Resort. Yesterday, the longest stage, saw the riders take on more than 100km of gravel in the Tsitsikamma area, ending at Storms River Village.
Leading the pack yet again were the Western Cape-based pair of Louis Knipe and Gerhard Heyns (Team Contego) who have led the field in the men's category since the first leg. In the women's race, Red Cherry riders Ischen Stopforth and Robyn de Groot also dominated again.
Today's short but tough final stage starts at Storms River Village and passes through Bloukrans Pass, Nature's Valley, the Salt River trail and Forest Hall before a beach section on Keurbooms Beach and a race to the finish on Plettenberg Bay's Central Beach. – Garden Route Media