*Sadly, this event has been postponed to 2022 as per press release below*
Good bye Winter weight and hello Winter muscle! Cycling enthusiasts throughout South Africa have been hard at work this year training for the upcoming and 22nd Karoo to Coast 100km MTB Challenge. After the postponement of last year’s race, riders are more than ready to get back in the saddle on Sunday 26 September 2021 and to tackle one of the most physically enduring races in South Africa.
The Karoo to Coast solo off-road mountain bike challenge has become a yearly pilgrimage for many riders, but for first-time riders tackling the challenge, Hello Garden Route has a breakdown of what riders can expect from the event.
The race has staggered start times from 7h30, with seven groups dispersing 5 minutes apart. After the traditional shotgun start, participants will race through the scenic route from Uniondale to Knysna via the Prince Alfred’s Pass, riding through stunning mountain views to the natural beauty of the indigenous forests of Tsitsikamma before ending in Knysna.
The Karoo to Coast mountain bike challenge is a true test of stamina, skill and determination. After the dramatic downward sweep of Prince Alfred’s Pass, riders will have to endure the almost 15km uphill climb from Diepriver to Buffelsnek before passing through the downhill climb from Komsepad to Gouna, featuring several tight corners – so remember to take it easy!
Although the allowance of the challenge is a sign of good things to come, event organisers are still operating within strict Covid-19 measures to ensure the safety of all. The measures include limiting participation from 4500 to 2500 riders and hiring a Covid Compliance officer to oversee the rules and regulations to ensure a successful and safe event.
What To Know
Saturday 25 September 2021
13h00 – 21h00
For those not staying in the area, alternative arrangements have been made for participants to register and collect their entry packs on the morning of the race (26 September 2021) between 06h00 – 07h30 at Uniondale.
For their well-being, riders are strongly encouraged to pack enough energy bars and healthy snacks to hold them over for the duration of the 100km. Event organisers advise that all riders carry at least two full water bottles with their drink of choice as well as a full “Camelbak” if possible.
To encourage every rider to take breaks as needed, there are 9 total water points, with the first located at the top of the Ou Wapad 10km in. Each water point will have sufficient water and Powerade for all riders and food will be available from the 5th water point at Buffelsnek – roughly halfway through the race. Note: Although food will be available, the event organisers are unable to guarantee that every rider will receive food as availability will depend on the consumption of the riders that come before them – be sure to pack a snack just in case.
All riders are advised to carry the tools necessary to be able to fix a puncture, preferably keep their mobile phone with them, and ensure that a note regarding any medications that they are allergic to be visible on their person in the event of requiring medical assistance.
For riders not from the area, Hello Garden Route Property Management has a special offer – exclusive to Hello Garden Route travellers – for nearby self-catering accommodations booked over this time – stay 4 nights and only pay for 3!
Lazur Holiday Apartment in Wilderness – 5 sleeper @ R 1500 per night. Located in the heart of Wilderness village.
Pet-friendly options to include the furrier members of your family
Cola Beach Holiday House in Sedgefield – 8 sleeper @ R 6000 per night. A stunning villa with full ocean views, perfect for friends or family. Can sleep extra 2 pax on double sleeper couch @ R 500 ppspn additional.
Sedgefield Island Holiday House – 8 sleeper @ R 3000 per night. Charming holiday house on The Island.
Kleinkrantz Holiday House in Wilderness – 12 sleeper @ R 3500 per night. Beachfront holiday house with swimming pool.
Cape Footprints in Wilderness – 8 sleeper @ R 3000 per night. Wheelchair-friendly luxury home on Kleinkrantz beachfront.
Kleinkrantz Beach Villa in Wilderness – 8 sleeper @ R 4000 per night. Elegant oceanside house with pool and full sea views.
Please be advised that bookings are subject to availability upon booking.
For more accommodation options in Wilderness, Sedgefield or Knysna and elsewhere in the Garden Route, Hello Garden Route – Your Friendly Experts in Garden Route Accommodation are available to assist to make sure that your stay is nothing short of amazing!
CCPP Group Lions Karoo to Coast postponed to September 2022
KNYSNA, South Africa, 10 August 2021 – Due to the ongoing impact of the COVID-19 pandemic the 2021 CCPP Group Lions Karoo to Coast Mountain Bike Challenge has been postponed until September 2022.
This event has become one of the largest point to point events of its type in Africa and has been running since 1999. It has sold out at 4500 riders for a decade until Covid-19 resulted in the event being postponed for the first time in 2019. It was scheduled for Sunday 26th September 2021 and entries had sold out at reduced number of 2500 tickets.
“It was after a great deal of consideration and with sadness that we had to make this decision,” said Zandile Meneses, on behalf of the event owners, the Uniondale and Knysna Lions. “It was our intention to run the event in September this year, and we had put plans in place to do so, but it has become apparent in our ongoing discussions with role players and consultants, that we could not guarantee 100 percent safety from the current Covid-19 wave for our crew, riders and locals of the hosting towns.
The event starts in Uniondale and finishes in Knysna and although the finish venue could be realistically managed using the events comprehensive Covid-19 Compliance Plan, the logistics around travel and accommodation in Uniondale are more complicated. This is due to the large number of cyclists and support crew and the small size of the town. Ultimately the risk of infection due to factors outside of the race management control, were too high to compromise the safety of all involved in the current Covid-19 climate.
“The health of our employees, sponsor staff, competitors and their support crew, suppliers and the Knysna and Uniondale residents is the most important issue to consider at this time. The decision was an extremely difficult one to make as we know that our riders are so enthusiastic to participate and that the economies of both towns receive a huge boost from the event.”
The event owners believe in the longevity of the event and want the K2C to be a highlight on the race calendar for many years to come. The event is also about the unique rider experience of Karoo and Knysna hospitality and the current restrictions would mean that this experience would have had to be compromised and would still not be 100 percent Covid-19 safe.
The Lions added that the loyal K2C riders are of utmost importance to them and they appreciate the frustration for many – at the way the pandemic has effected this and other events. For this reason the charity has offered the following options to all riders who have entered:
- Full migration of entry and any merchandise or other orders to the 2022 event at no extra charge.
- The refund for riders of entry and any merchandise or other orders. Please contact email@example.com with your full name and ID number / bank details for this refund.
- Donation – riders may donate their entry fee etc to the charity that owns the event – the Lions of Uniondale and Knysna – who support various charities in the Southern Cape, including Sightfirst and the South African Guide Dog Association.
A mailer will go out to the entry database during the course of the week to reiterate rider options. Any other queries may be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org