aQuellé Tour Durban Media Release

 No: td2004

17 March 2020

   Embargo: None

Written by: Dave Macleod

New Tour Durban MTB races excite KZN riders

Durban – The introduction of two brand new mountain bike races as part of the aQuellé Tour Durban programme on Saturday 25 April has been warmly received by the regions MTB enthusiasts as the new routes offer tracts of new single track riding north of Umhlanga.

The rejigged weekend of cycling now includes a 20km and a 40km MTB race based at Cornubia Mall that will take riders north towards Mount Moreland, but Storm Ferguson, chairman of EMBA who are the route designers, says the majority of the routes will offer brand new single track trails never before ridden by riders familiar with EMBA routes.

“At least 25km of the 40km route will be on single track,” he confirmed, adding that the relationship with Tongaat Hulett and Roberts Consulting the current lesse of the Blackburn and Umlothi farms had paved the way for a shift in the riding options hosted by the MTB club.

“The initial days of EMBA saw riders restricted to the farm roads. Years of building a solid relationship with the farmers and farm management has resulted in a shift, due to the need for rider safety, from the roads to single-track trails adjacent to or within the coastal riverine bush bisecting the canfields.

“We want to retain as much of our historical coastal forest and riverine areas for leisure use by cyclists, hikers, trail runners and birders as we can through sustainability by the mountain biking community,” he added.

“Many of those who haven't ridden the area for years due to the belief that only farms road riding is on offer will have their assumptions shattered by the amount of thrilling single track trail that is so conveniently provided in a peri-urban setting that they can ride to from home or an Umhlanga hotel.”

While there were many skilled mountain bikers in the region Ferguson said the trails for the two races have been designed with the average recreational mountain biker in mind.

“The essence of the trails is that they are all ride-able by all mountain bikers. We want to create riding for the sheer joy of the outdoors at a safe venue and to offer a great training facility which challenges fitness and skill levels. We offer reasonable distances as well as a link to Holla Trails in Ballito.

“Creating highly technical trail for the two percent who are capable is fairly simple. Creating trail for the ninety eight percent of moderately skilled riders wishing to return physically intact from a weekend leisure pursuit that takes more planning,” said Ferguson.

He added that EMBA supplements the local farms' own security with a private security company to safeguard every rider on their routes.

Ferguson pointed out that several sections will be used for the first time at aQuellé Tour Durban, including the brand new Cascades and Oxbow sections of single track, the latter he says is thanks to the efforts of our Trail Maintenance Manager Charlie Oxenham.

The introduction of the new MTB races replaces the Cyclocross race as part of the aQuellé Tour Durban programme, which offered MTB riders 15km of off-road riding added to the 45km road race on the M4.

The MTB races have caught the imagination of cyclists, and many are now planning to “Do The Double” by riding one of the MTB races on the Saturday and then taking part in one of the three road races on the Sunday.

Entries for the road race are now open at and the new MTB races can be entered at

More information can be found at 

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Mountain bikers in the greater Durban area have welcomed the introduction of new 20km and 40km MTB aQuellé Tour Durban powered by Cycle Lab MTB races on Saturday 25 April.

 Anthony Grote/
Gameplan Media

Mountain bikers in the greater Durban area have welcomed the introduction of new 20km and 40km MTB aQuellé Tour Durban powered by Cycle Lab MTB races on Saturday 25 April.

  Anthony Grote/
Gameplan Media

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