Absa Cape Epic: Stage 1, 14 March
Tulbagh, Western Cape
Ariane and Annika: 2nd on stage, 2nd place Overall
It was a hot and dusty day around the Tulbagh Valley for Team Spur as they battled through a tough 108km on Monday’s Stage 1. Both our men’s and women’s teams fell victim to the harsh terrain and ruthless nature of the Absa Cape Epic.
Our women’s Team Spur-Specialized had a fantastic start to the race. Laying down the power and surging clear of the world-class chasing ladies’ peloton early on, building a three-minute lead heading into the final 20km.
Unfortunately, the run of form came to a crashing end as Ariane Kleinhans slipped up in an innocuous turn and bent her bike’s rear brake disc. Unbeknownst to Ariane and her powerful Danish partner Annika Langvad, the brakes were engaging and it wasn’t long before Ariane felt the effects of riding flat-out with her brakes on!
They were caught in the final 2km by Team Ascendis, and beaten to the line by 38 seconds. Ariane was shattered as she crossed the line, but ultimately relieved to hear the problem was with her bike, and not her legs!
Our ladies are the ultimate professionals and are already focused on reversing their fortune tomorrow. Ariane and Annika remain motivated and excited to put their stamp on this race!