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  aQuellé Tour Durban presented by Bridge Fund Managers Media Release

 No: td1812

27 April 2018

   Embargo: None

Written by: Dave Macleod


Tour Durban set to celebrate a quarter of a century of cycling the city


Durban – A huge field of elite and recreational cyclists will take to the streets on Sunday, soaking up the Durban Autumn weather and savouring the full road closure to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the aQuellé Tour Durban presented by Bridge Fund Managers on Sunday 29 April.

Many of the country's best road racers will converge on Moses Mabhida stadium for the 6:15am start on Sunday morning, many of them travelling straight from the Tour de Limpopo that ended on Thursday, with all the major teams keen to scoop the title at the Durban classic.

Team BCX will come into the event as the juggernaut to topple if any other teams have ambitions of claiming rights to the top step of the podium. Their team includes seasoned pro riders ready to take either Commonwealth Games bronze medallist and defending Tour Durban Champion Clint Hendricks to the line or multiple Tour Durban winner Nolan Hoffman.

The ProTouch outfit will be a threat throughout, capable of taking Reynard Butler to the title against some of his former team mates.

There will be significant local support for the Under 23 Office Guru Racing team that is spearheaded by Umhlanga raised Ryan Harris, now racing out of Johannesburg as a full time pro. Harris has rattled plenty of cages this year, and snatched podium places from far more fancied riders.

The women's race will draw on a smaller elite field, which places more pressure on the individual riders to manage their races, but the powerhouse Demacon team under the astute stewardship of Lynette Burger Pieterse will be looking to extend its unbeaten run this season.

Cashandra Slingerland and her Cycle Nation outfit will pose a strong challenge, as will a number of classy solo riders, but the Dermacon trio of Burger Pieterse, Kim le Court and Carla Oberholzer will be odds-on favourites to make it eight from eight.

"Kim brings good form back from the Commonwealth Games, while Carla and I have had some time off so hopefully that works for us.

"The team is in a good space now because we understand each other so well," she added "We always have a game plan but then there is always a backup plan. We are open and honest with each other that it feels like we are just in tune," she added.

The 100km classic will feature small route changes this year as the out-and-back M4 loop has been shortened by eight kilometres and will now turn at the Mdloti bridge instead of the Desainager Circle.

That distance will be made by an eight kilometre lap starting in a northward direction from the race base at Moses Mabhida stadium, turning at Blue Lagoon before returning to the familiar route through the City of Durban towards Margaret Mncadi Avenue on the Victoria Embankment and onto the M4 Southern Freeway.

The elite racing teams and individual riders will start in the first batch at 6:15am, followed by batches at regular intervals over the next hour.

The cyclocross race that covers 55 kilometres and includes ten kilometres of off-road riding for the mountain-bikers gets under way from Moses Mabhida at 09:10am, followed fifteen minutes later by the first of the batches in the popular 45 kilometre Family Fun Ride. Both rides are based on the loop up the M4.

The race once again guarantees riders the luxury of full road closure to safeguard every cyclists on the course. The race officials have committed to re-opening the roads in conjunction with the Durban Metro Police management as soon as the last riders have been confirmed to have cleared off each segment of the route.

While the race celebrates the opportunity for riders of all abilities to enjoy the typically reliable Autumn weather and riding on full road closure, the charity ethos that underpins the event will be at the forefront of every riders mind.

The biggest beneficiary of the event is the Domino Foundation, a community-based charity that operates in the Amaoti, Phoenix and Waterloo areas north of Durban, providing services that range from a babies’ home to feeding, early childhood development, life skills and skills development, Red Light anti-human-trafficking and a recycle Swop Shop.

Many riders will don the Domino Foundation colours for the race as an extra contribution to the ground-breaking charity, while others will volunteer to help that the registration and then man the Domino Foundation watering point on the route.

Also prominent will be the dozens of riders in their gaudy black-and-white bovine costumes and riding kit representing The Cows, raising money for the CHOC Childhood Cancer Foundation in their trademark boisterous and spirited style.

Durban organiser of The Cows Iris Varty will tough out the full 100km distance with her daughter Lauren, both donning the furry Cow costumes that have helped make the organisation famous.

The 45 kilometre race has become a platform for recreational riders to compete in a wide variety of different bikes, and every year there are tandems, fold-up bikes, unicycles and many other unusual pedal craft.

The race's presenting sponsors Bridge Fund Managers have once again formalised the hand cycle class for handicapped riders, offering prize money for the top hand cyclists, and facilitating the participation of these athletes in the normal batches of the 45 kilometre race where they enjoy plenty of support from the others riders in the race.

The day will conclude with a free Kids race held at the track at the Peoples Park at Moses Mabhida Stadium at 11am, where youngsters can emulate their parents and earn a free aQuellé cold drink and a Hubertos ice cream.

While excellent entries have been received for mall three races, many last minute requests have been received by the race organisers, particularly with the excellent weather forecast for the weekend.

Late Entries will be accepted at Registration ay Cycle Lab at Cornubia Mall on Friday and Saturday, but no entries will be taken on race day. Credit Card and Zapper facilities will be available for payment.

Road closures (approximate times):
Masabalala Yengwa (NMR) - 05h30 - 14h30
Margaret Mncadi Avenue - 05h30 - 08h00
M4 South - 05h30 - 08h30
M7 Edwin Swales & M19 to Pinetown - 06h00 - 09h30
M19 Pinetown to Umgeni Road - 06h15 - 10h00
Inanda Road (Springfield Park) - 06h30 - 10h15
Riverside Road - 06h30 - 10h30
M4 North both sides - 06h30 - 14h00

Start Times:
105km: First batch 06h15, Last batch 07h15
55km: From 09h10
45km: From 09h25
Kiddies Ride: 11h30 at the People's Park

Registration - Cycle Labe Cornubia Mall
Friday 27 April 10h00 - 18h00
Saturday 28 April 10h00 - 17h00


The aQuellé Tour Durban, presented by Bridge Fund Managers, takes place on Sunday 29 April 2018. More information can be found at www.tourdurban.co.za 

ENDS

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aQuellé Tour Durban presented by Bridge Fund Managers Logo  

Team BCX star sprinter Clint Hendricks has confirmed he will be on the start line for the aQuellé Tour Durban, presented by Bridge Fund Managers.

Zoon Cronje/
Gameplan Media

Durban raised Ryan Harris of Team Office Guru Racing will be eager to try and win his hometown classic at the aQuellé Tour Durban, presented by Bridge Fund Managers.

Supplied/
Gameplan Media

"Get involved. Be part of something special," says Iris Varty (right), who will be riding the aQuellé Tour Durban, presented by Bridge Fund Managers, with her daughter Lauren in their Cow costumes.

Supplied/
Gameplan Media

Hand cyclists will once again have their own class ands prize money at the aQuellé Tour Durban after presenting sponsor Bridge Fund managers put up prize money for the top hand cyclists. "Fellow cyclists are also always ready to assist hand cyclists along if needed.," said QuadPara Association head Ari Seirlis, a regular participant in the race.

Dave Macleod/
Gameplan Media

The aQuellé Tour Durban, presented by Bridge Fund Managers will be based at the iconic Moses Mabhida stadium, where the start and finish of the 100km classic, 45km Family Fun Ride and 55kim cyclocross event will take place.

Dave Macleod/
Gameplan Media

The aQuellé Tour Durban, presented by Bridge Fund Managers will be based at the iconic Moses Mabhida stadium, where the start and finish of the 100km classic, 45km Family Fun Ride and 55kim cyclocross event will take place.

Anthony Grote/
Gameplan Media

The aQuellé Tour Durban, presented by Bridge Fund Managers will be based at the iconic Moses Mabhida stadium, where the start and finish of the 100km classic, 45km Family Fun Ride and 55kim cyclocross event will take place.

Anthony Grote/
Gameplan Media

Giving children younger than ten a chance to get involved in the aQuellé Tour Durban, presented by Bridge Fund Managers, the free Kids Fun Ride around the Peoples Park at Moses Mabhida Stadium will include a cold aQuellé drink and Hubertos ice cream for every youngster taking part. Getting into the spirit of the event are (from left) Alistair Gray, Tamara Gray and Hayden Gray, with The Cows' Durban Daisy dishing out the ice cream.

Supplied/
Gameplan Media

The aQuellé Tour Durban, presented by Bridge Fund Managers will finish with the popular Kids Ride at the track around the Moses Mabhida Stadium Peoples Park.

Dave Macleod/
Gameplan Media

My time to shine. Under 12 kids are invited to take part in the free Kids Ride at the track around the Moses Mabhida Stadium Peoples Park.

Dave Macleod/
Gameplan Media

Riders taking part in all three events at the aQuellé Tour Durban, presented by Bridge Fund Managers can savour stunning sea views on the out-and-back leg on the M4 freeway.

Anthony Grote/
Gameplan Media

Another big field has entered the aQuellé Tour Durban, presented by Bridge Fund Managers that is based at the iconic Moses Mabhida Stadium.

Dave Macleod/
Gameplan Media

The first batch of riders in the 100km road race at the aQuellé Tour Durban, presented by Bridge Fund Managers gets under way at 6:15am.

Dave Macleod/
Gameplan Media

The first batch of riders in the 100km road race at the aQuellé Tour Durban, presented by Bridge Fund Managers gets under way at 6:15am.

Dave Macleod/
Gameplan Media

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