Talk of the Town

How to get from G to C


The first few kilometres take you from Makhanda’s industrial area (Rautenbach Road) up a climb to the top of Mountain Drive. There are around 10m of rocky single track down from the Toposcope which is quite technical. If you live in the area, get some practice riding this section (Some tips at the end of this!).

There is no shame in dismountin­g and walking this section if you’re not confident riding it, but please make sure you don’t inconvenie­nce (or endanger) cyclists behind or around you.

First check that there is noone about to pass you, or close behind you; then steer your bike as far off that section as you can before stopping and dismountin­g.

Be aware of the “line” that cyclists are taking through the technical section and stay well clear of it when you remount your bike. Rejoin the “pack” with care and considerat­ion.

The descent down the valley on the Southwell Road is steep but it is tarred. It is important to keep left and keep a slow pace on the blind corners. The rest of the route is on country gravel road with some smooth downhills and a couple of uphills to keep you honest.

The 75km race adds a 17km stretch through jeep track and single track in the Albany Trails past Sibuya Game Reserve, where there is a chance of seeing any of the Big Five. Both 58km and 75km events finish with a steep decent through the River Club and conclude at Port Alfred Country Club, French Street (not the PA Golf Club).

This is the first year gravel bikes have been allowed to enter. Last year the G2C piloted ebikes. Both are only allowed to do the 58km and they will start last, as they are a bit faster.

For spectators please note there is only one entrance to the Port Alfred Country Club for parking: please enter through Atherstone Road.

Both races start at BUCO Warehouse, 9 Strowan Road, Makhanda and finish at Port Alfred Country Club, French Street (New finish area).


Generally: Your bike feels like it is jumping around and your job is to let it, by being as relaxed as possible while gently controllin­g your speed and direction.

Position: Get your weight further back by sliding your bottom further back on the saddle, even slightly off the back. That means your arms are stretched a little longer in front of you, elbows slightly out, and (above all) relaxed.

Line: That’s the exact route you choose through a technical section. If there’s someone experience­d riding in front of you, follow their line.

Speed: Feather your brakes to stay within a speed you’re comfortabl­e with, but do your (very gentle!) braking before you reach that bumpy section or sharp turn. Once you’re actually on a tricky section (rocks, mud, sand or a sharp turn) keep your momentum.

Talk of the Town has partnered with The Cycle Asylum to offer the six-week Zero to G2C Hero training programme. For week 6, your last week of training (October 24-30) turn to page 16.

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