With just less than a week to go, last-minute entries are streaming in for The Herald VW Cycle Tour, which rolls out across Nelson Mandela Bay on the first weekend in February.
The Herald’s chief marketing officer Justin Peel said there had been a definite upswing in interest as people returned to work, bolstered by their new year’s resolutions to get fit.
“The entries have definitely increased rapidly after the holidays and we are expecting a flurry of interest before the January 20 cut-off date.”
Peel advised prospective participants to take advantage of the pre-registration period, as late entries would incur an additional 50 per cent penalty fee.
“So it’s best to get online and submit your entry right now.”
He said a limited number of printed entry forms were also available at most cycle shops in Nelson Mandela Bay.
“However, entries for the Ultimate Quest will only be accepted via the website.”
This “super-category”, which was introduced last year, rewards the best rider on aggregate across both the 80km Extreme mountain bike challenge and 106km Classic road race.
Peel said the category was open to male and female participants, with the top man and woman receiving a cash prize of R5000 each.
He said the weekend festival of cycling offered a range of distances – in both the road and mountain bike disciplines – to suit riders of all ages and fitness levels.
On the Saturday, the Addo Polo Club plays host to the mountain bike events, while the kiddies’ and family road races take place at Hobie Beach in Port Elizabeth.
The cycle tour comes to a close the following day with the signature road races from the beachfront.
“If you have already registered and completed your payment, you can check the website to see if you are listed under ‘registered athletes’,” said Peel.
“If your name does not appear there, you may query it with the race office. But it can take up to 48 hours from registration to listing, so don’t panic if you don’t find your name.”
He said all participants would receive an SMS prior to race registration giving them their seeding and start chute details.
Peel reminded riders in the 106km Classic in particular to bring their timing chip to be checked at registration at The Boardwalk Convention Centre exhibition level.
“Riders travelling from other towns and cities should also check the website for accommodation and car hire specials.”