Another year has gone by, Nico’s age went up but his spirit got younger. Today was my team mate Nico’s 43rd birthday, and what an amazing day we had out on our bikes to celebrate it! Waking up for day 2 with slightly warmer weather as well as clear skies, things were looking promising for us in terms of the conditions. Today we had to face 67km which included 1600m climbing kicking off at Quinta da Monthana, through the Homtini mountains before finishing off with a dash down Phantom pass and back to Thesen Island in Knysna.
The start went a lot faster than yesterday due to a King Of the Mountain hotspot a mere 3km into the stage. Dominic Calitz set a blitzing pace, which I was able to follow before stepping it up to claim the neat little cash prize at the top. Now I can afford to buy Nico a birthday present! After that move it was only Dominic, Nico and myself on the front with Jarryd Hayley also hanging on for a little while before we pulled away from him too. From here on out we faced some pretty mean climbs, but also followed by some awesome descents! It can get lonely out in those mountain so I was super stoked to have some quality lads for company.
This maybe left me a little too relaxed and I completely forgot about the Enduro section, which is unbelievably fun to hit with a couple of really fast riders. This time around the Enduro section had a little more descent in it, and birthday boy Nico made sure it was his. Entering the short downhill section behind Dominic and Nico was entertaining as I watched them jostle for position and nearly take each other out, my eyes like saucers. Luckily they both stayed upright and we all had a blast hitting some of the famous Homtini singletrack together.
The race drew to a close with yet some more awesome singletrack down Phantom pass were we all chased each other like little kids before sharing the pacing along the lagoon, through the waterfront and back on to Thesen Island. This time Dominc delivered a powerful kick to beat us over the line.
Judging by the the whoops and cheers I think it’s fair to say that we had a pretty rad day out there. Is this actually racing? Really looking forward to the final day tomorrow which winds it’s way though the Harkeville Red Route. Yeeha!
Keep it rubber side down.