The four-day mountain biking feast that happens each year on the Heritage Day Long Weekend on the Garden Route will be better than ever! After disruptions from government restrictions in 2020 and 2021, the Dr Evil Classic three-day mountain bike stage race and CCPP Group Lions Karoo 2 Coast 100km Challenge will deliver another edition of fresh challenges and rewards in one of the most scenic places on earth!
This is a paid partnership
As has always been the format, the Dr Evil Classic takes place from 21-24 September 2022 and will precede the CCPP Group Karoo 2 Coast 100km Challenge on 25 September in what is an annual highlight for thousands of enthusiastic mountain bikers. Most combine the two events to ensure they experience the full range of mountain biking highlights that the region offers.
The Dr Evil Classic is a boutique event that explores trails around Plett over three stimulating stages – each starting and finishing at a different venue to ensure variety for both riders and supporters. The organisers know a classy venue when they see one and have once again chosen superb stage venues that embrace the local infrastructure that’s made Plett one of the most popular tourist destinations in the country.
A new venue will be revealed for Stage 1 so that the first day’s riding can incorporate the growing network of new singletrack trails in the Plett region. Stage 2 will once again be at Kurland Hotel and Polo Estate, nestled in the foothills of the Tsitsikama Mountains, while Stage 3 will return to the much-loved coastal venue of Cairnbrogie Dairy Farm.
It’s hard to find a more scenic stage race – not only in South Africa, but anywhere. The mountains, forests and coastline in the Plett region deliver a truly post card-worthy place to ride a mountain bike.
Unlike most stage races, the Dr Evil Classic doesn’t have a tented race village. This allows you to choose your own accommodation to suit your budget or your interests or needs. Got family with you? Stay near the beach. Love wine and good food? Stay at a local wine farm. Just want to go with the flow? Stay at the Bayview Hotel , which is near the beach and has good wine and dine options…
The event has recently welcomed Food Lover’s Market on board as the Official Drinks and Food partner. Another new collaboration with MTO Trails Garden Route allows for riders the bliss of accessing close on 20km of brand new free flowing single track on Stage 3.
The stages are challenging but not spirit-crushing and are set out as follows:
Stage 1: 70.2km, 1354m ascent
Stage 2: 48.1km, 805m ascent
Stage 3: 47.6km, 678m ascent
There’s a mix of gravel roads, jeep track, forest paths and purpose-built singletrack to ensure all riders enjoy the route.
To enter or for more information, visit the CCPP Group Dr Evil Classic website here.
THE BUCKET-LIST RACE
The annual CCPP Group Lions Karoo 2 Coast 100km Challenge is one of the most popular mountain bike events on the South African calendar. In 2019 it was top of the list https://www.treadmtb.co.za/these-are-sas-favourite-mtb-races/ of the country’s favourite ultra-marathon races (90-180km). And for good reason.
Organised as a fund-raising initiative by the Knysna and Uniondale Lions, the event is a point-to-point challenge that’s worth adding to any mountain biking bucket list. Even the most seasoned mountain bikers describe the thrill of finishing the Lions Karoo to Coast race, which starts in Uniondale and ends in Knysna. The route is largely made up with riding the Prince Alfred’s Pass, a spectacular 88km pass that traverses the Outeniqua Mountains and the Keurbooms River Valley.
The area is a conservancy, which means that the fauna and flora is protected and unspoiled. It’s hard to describe the feeling of riding a bicycle through there, which is why it’s best to experience it for yourself. The road has a good quality gravel surface and includes 1560m of climbing and 1815m of descending!
The 100km distance isn’t easy. While there’s some fun, swooping descending down the pass, there are some rolling climbs in the latter part of the race that will test your stamina and resolve and make crossing the finish line in Knysna all that more rewarding!
To enter or for more information, visit the CCPP Lions Group Karoo to Coast website here.