With over R400 000 in prizes and some major changes in store, organisers are aiming to attract cyclists from across the country when The Herald VW Cycle Tour takes place in Addo and Port Elizabeth from February 2 to 3.
According to event coordinator Linda Harwood, the 2013 edition would see bigger incentives, better routes and a brand-new race village, as well as the addition of the Ultimate Quest super-category.
“We strive to keep this event fresh and exciting for both loyal and first-time participants,” said Harwood.
“That’s why we’ve revamped the routes in both the road and mountain bike events and added a new initiative to this weekend festival of cycling.
“The Ultimate Quest offers riders both a serious physical challenge and a great incentive to race for.”
She said the racing prize purse had been increased by R10 000 to accommodate the new category, which recognises the best overall male and female cyclists across the mountain bike and road feature races.
“Significant reward for effort is always attractive, and certainly for an event that is rated as one of the top five in the country.”
As the country’s second oldest national classic, Harwood said it was important to attract the top pro teams and maintain the event’s status on the national racing calendar.
For those participants not in line for a podium finish, she said there would be plenty on offer, including the main lucky draw prize of a Volkswagen Polo 1.4 Trendline valued at R170 000.
“After giving away the Polo Vivo this year, our title sponsor felt that, since this is a premium event, it was appropriate to offer the Polo as an even bigger drawcard for entering the tour.”
Harwood said participants also stand to win R50 000 worth of household goods from Tony’s Furniture, Appliances & Beds, two GT road and mountain bikes with a combined value of R40 000, a Silverback bike from Action Cycles, a weekend getaway at Kuzuko Lodge plus additional sponsored hampers.
“The total value of the lucky draw prizes is R280 000 and still growing as new prize sponsors come on board.”
She said the medal ceremony and lucky draws would take place at the official prize-giving following the feature race on the final day.
“This will be at our new ‘home of cycling’ on the exhibition level of The Boardwalk Convention Centre.