The Trans Afrika Bike Race 2016 – Race Report 2
Monday night Chris was at Barberton, Andi at White River, Kenny in Nelspruit and Johan in Hoedspruit. A distance of around 250 kms-separating front to back.
Johan left at 03h00 again on Tuesday and headed for Barberton, he finally managed to eat a good meal at Hazyview, the first since his stomach bug on Saturday night. Johan stopped at Nelspruit for a meal but battled to get going again and spent the night just outside of Nelspruit. This morning Johan is struggling and will try to get to Barberton to rest up. His body has obviously not recovered and he’s doing the smart thing before he tackles the big climb up to Piggs Peak. Cut off is at 12h00 on Thursday so he still has time to make it.
Kenny and Andi were together at Barberton, however Kenny has a recurring knee problem and went into Barberton to get something to help him, Andi carried on up the hill to Bulembu, the border between South Africa and Swaziland. The sign at the bottom say 64 kms but has no mention that it’s all uphill. From Barberton to Ermelo via Piggs Peak is roughly 5000 meters of ascent.
Kenny arrived at the border at 14h30 30 minutes faster than his time last year. Kenny stayed at Sunset Guest House for the night and left early to get back to South Africa and head for Morgenzon.
Andi crossed the border and was through Piggs Peak heading past the Maguga Dam on the Piggs Peak Oshoek road at 16h45. Andi spent the night at Ngwenya just short of the border and crossed back into South Africa as the border opened. Andi clearly has the speed but has been plagued by a series of mishaps. Tuesday looks like a good day for him and there had been no potholes or nails to ride over! Wednesday will see him head for Warden or Bethlehem.
Chris upfront is having a fantastic ride and started early from Barberton and was through the border, Piggs Peak and back into South Africa by 15h40 on Tuesday and heading for Ermelo. Chris spent the night at Ermelo and left early to get on the road again. He is riding into colder weather but he may miss the rain. In theory Chris should be in Fouriesburg by Thursday still on schedule for a 10-day finish. Hopefully the wind will stay away.
The weather forecast up ahead of the riders is colder. Moteng Pass is ok until Saturday when there is rain forecast. There is snow on the Drakensburg Mountains and in parts of Lesotho but not in the Moteng area at the moment. Lets see what today brings, chance of a big day for the riders.
Safe riding and we hope to see you soon.
Andy & Liz