Sus the FNB Wines2Whales Race
Date: 7 to 9 November 2014
Where: Lourensford (Somerset West) to Onrus (Hermanus)
Stats: Stage One – 72km, Stage Two – 67km & Stage Three 73km
By: Diana Carolin @di_carolin
Three weeks after the Bridge Cape Pioneer Trek it was time to get back into race mode and tackle the FNB Wines2Whales Race. My partner, Phil Hulse, for the race had very kindly managed to get his company Perpetua Investments to part sponsor the race entry and our kit. It was his first W2W and his first three day stage race, so he had put in some serious training. For me it was the last hurdle before a well-deserved rest after a long year of racing and being on the bike. I fear I may have let him down a little. Though, all in all we did well.
I last did the race two years ago and have to say that I noticed a marked difference in the routes on Day 1 and 2. Whereas in the past the routes had been really tough and in places quite a bit more technically challenging, this time, it was like that third bowl of porridge that Goldilocks tried: “just right!. Don’t get me wrong, I love technical routes but it really made for such pleasurable riding and just took the sting out a little to have such great well-constructed trails to ride.
Day 1 was hot but the hike up Gamtou Pass didn’t seem as bad as in previous years and the singletrack afterwards was worth the hike. Day 2 really lived up to its name as the “play day”. Even though I was feeling like a flat wheel and would rather have been at home in bed, it was still so much fun and I was amazed over and over again at each section of brilliant singletrack that we rode. For once the bridges were fun and not horrific death defying challenges. Day 3 was a fast dash to the finish interspersed with my partner getting punctures and some more brilliant sections of singletrack and then a crazy dash from the tar road to the end as we were passed by some mates who had been hot on our tails for a while.
Even though I wasn’t feeling my best over the three days of racing and we had a few mechanical issues with my partner’s bike, we managed a respectable 11th place in a very strong mixed field of 35 teams. Thanks to all the sponsors and everyone who put all the hard work into the whole fantastic event. You excelled yourselves. And well done to Phil for completing his first stage race and for being so patient with a rather tired Di.
Once again I was fuelled by Raw revolution Bars and Ener-B gels and this time by Cadence for carb drinks and recovery shakes. All fantastic products I highly recommend.