WESTERN CAPE, 29 MARCH 2014 – To finish the Absa Cape Epic once is an exceptional achievement; to complete it three times takes the heart of a lion.
Amabubesi is Zulu for ‘pride of lions’ and is the name of the club made up of riders who have completed the Absa Cape Epic at least 3 times. Tomorrow, three Team Absa riders are aiming to become part of this elite club by completing the world’s toughest stage race that has taken them on a 718km journey through some of the Western Cape’s most scenic , but also treacherous , terrain.
These riders are William Mokgopo, Clayton Duckworth and Tim Brink.
Says team captain, Ernst Viljoen, “With days of mud, rain, cold, bumps and bruises – we are exhausted. What keeps us going is our individual goals and I know the three inspiring men will do Team Absa proud and come home with the Amabubesi.”
Twenty-two year old William is the youngest member of Team Absa. He was first introduced to mountain biking in 2006 through a Diepsloot Mountain Bike Academy project called “Earn-a-Bike”. The initiative saw children from Diepsloot taught how to build a bicycle. Once complete, they were then allowed to keep the bike as their own. This was William’s first MTB.
He’s now a rising mountain bike star; just days ago, Cycling SA announced that William has been selected for the Elite U23 XCO Team for the MTB XCO World Cup taking place at Cascades MTB Park in Pietermaritzburg, KwaZulu-Natal, in April this year.
Clayton Duckworth is a former pro-motocross rider who this year completed his third Absa Cape Epic, earning himself an Amabubesi medal. This year he was partnered with Absa Cape Epic first-timer and Diepsloot Mountain Bike Academy rider, Tsepo Nyirenda.
Ride Magazine editor, Tim Brink, was a last minute edition to the 2014 Team Absa. He replaced Jan Scannel, who was forced to withdraw due to a shoulder injury, just days before the start of the Absa Cape Epic.
Tim, who describes himself as a father, editor, writer and cyclist, finished this year’s Absa Cape Epic after a nine-year absence from the race.
Image caption: (L-R) Team Absa riders Clayton Duckworth, Tim Brink and William Mokgopo after Stage 6 of the Absa Cape Epic.
Today’s Stage 6 Absa Cape Epic results:
Owen Hannie and William Mokgopo (completed in 4:46.13) 72nd position in Men’s category
Ernst Viljoen and Tim Brink (completed in 5:42) 102nd position in Master’s category
Stefan Terblanche and Joel Stransky (completed in 4:48.11) 101st in Men’s category
Gugu Zulu and Hlubi Mboya (completed in 7:04.02) 47th in Mixed category
Clayton Duckworth and Tsepo Nyirenda (completed in 5:57.16) 195th in Men’s category