Kevin Evans of the FedGroup Itec pro team won the Bridge Cape Pioneer Trek back in 2011. He was scheduled to start this, the fifth edition, but has decided to cut his season short in order to recover fully from abdominal surgery earlier this year. He’s one of the most experienced mountain bike stage racers in the world, so we asked him to give us his insights on the men’s race. Here’s his view of the opening prologue stage. – TREAD
Do you win the battle, or do you win the war? Or just try win both? The Bridge Cape Pioneer Trek has become known as the race with the highest single stage prize purse in stage racing history (Stage 2/Day 3 – check it out here: http://www.capepioneer.co.za/
Starting with tomorrow’s prologue at Buffelsdrift, and following the same course as last year, I would favour the cross country riders for this stage. A few teams stand out for this, Asrin Cycling with James Reid and Jens Scheurmans, Contego Giant with Louise Knipe and Gert Heyns, and SCOTT Factory Racing with Phil Buys and Matthys Beukes. I would say SCOTT Factory Racing has the most to win and also lose tomorrow, as the stage is tailor made to suit their riding style, as well as being held on Beukes’ property and on his own hand-built trails.
I would expect all the GC teams, the teams that are racing for the overall, to put in strong performances tomorrow, and perhaps even upset the apple cart with some showing their strength early on. Watch out for Fedgroup Itec’s Brandon Stewart and my (TEMPORARY) replacement Konny Looser. Based on their build-up and current form, I would have to say the look like favourites for the overall. Of course not to be discounted are Westvaal Bells Cycling’s Nico Bell and Gawie Combrink, the defending champions, and a new mix, but one that I would certainly watch, RE:CM’s Waylon Woolcock and Erik Kleinhans.
Its going to be an exciting week of racing! Stay posted on daily coverage right here on the TREAD website.
Source: Kevin Evans
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