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Monday morning news

Its been raining in the Stormberg since the early hours of this morning – this has affected all the riders still moving through that area.

Batch C riders Theo, Colin, Gavin and Henry are on their way to Brosterlea where they will stop for a while before continuing on towards the Stormberg portage.

Tim (Batch D) left Moordenaarspoort at 00h30, stopped in at Kranskop for 45min and is now very close to Brosterlea.

Up the road is Anthony, having left Brosterlea this morning. He seems to have sorted out his tyre issues for the moment.

Mike and Casper (Batch D) got to Brosterlea at 03h30 this morning and left again at 05h30 – they are now heading up the Stormberg portage in the rain.

Alex (Batch D) also stopped at Brosterlea, arriving at 11h30 last night and leaving again at 02h30. He’s now approaching Romansfontein, which puts him about 3 hours ahead of his chasers.

Batch B, Fiona, Leon, Craig, Annie and Stewart, together with Jonathan (batch A) all left Romansfontein this morning and are heading for Hofmeyr and then Elandsberg.

Batch A - Dave, Dawn, Chris, Colleen, Janine, Brad and Ray left Elandsberg at 04h00 and have just arrived at Stuttgart. After a second breakfast, they will be heading to the finish in Cradock.

Carl and Coen left Stuttgart at 05h00 and are currently going over the Schufteburg portage – after that its just the short climb up the back of Swaershoek Pass and then the long descent into Cradock.

Sunday wrap up – from Cradock

Race Office packed up and hit the road today – destination Cradock. Things didn’t go quite as planned, a puncture in Barkly East and a detour to Chesneywold to collect Robbie McIntosh, meant a delay in getting to the other end.

Robbie got about 30km out of Rhodes before he started experiencing chest pains and having difficulty breathing. He opted to withdraw to go in search of a doctor and was noticeably disappointed with today’s turn of events.

The rest of his batch made rapid progress out of Rhodes. Tim was going well until mid afternoon when he slowed – he seems to be struggling and is not feeling well. The end result is that he’s staying at Moordenaarspoort tonight trying to recover.

And then there are the non-stop night riding brigade. Just up the road are Mike and Casper, who checked in at Kranskop for a quick supper – they then left to take on the night, next stop Brosterlea and who knows after that…

At the same time Alex is nearing Brosterlea – a quick pit stop there and he’ll be off to tackle the Stromberg portage

The rest of the batches are already asleep but all made good progress today – thanks in part to the superb riding conditions – clear skies, dry roads and only a gentle breeze.

Batch C riders Theo, Colin, Gavin and Henry are staying at Kranskop tonight, while Anthony is at Brosterlea (he’s still battling with tyre issues)

Batch B riders Fiona, Leon, Craig, Annie and Stewart, together with Batch A rider Jonathan are all staying at Romansfontein tonight.

Making first tracks at the moment are Carl and Coen who had another good day, going all the way from Romansfontein to Stuttgart – they’ve ticked off some impressive days so far and are due in Cradock sometime tomorrow (Monday) morning.

News from the trail on Day 3

The riders from Batch A have had a good day – they left Kranskop at 04h00, stopped briefly at Brosterlea, scampered over the Stormberg, wasted no time getting through the tricky pivot section near De Rust and are now enjoying the good food and hospitality at Romansfontein. The are however minus one member – Jonathan was struggling, so opted to stop and rest at Brosterlea for the day.

Behind them we have Carl and Coen (Batch B) currently making their way up the Stormberg portage and making good time on their way to join Batch A at Romansfontein.

The rest of Batch B got over the Bontehoek portage today without too much trouble, made the customary lunch stop at Moordenaarspoort and are well on their way to Kranskop.

The rabbit from Batch C, Anthony, went off the front early on and had an early lunch at Slaapkranz, despite some minor bike issues hampering his progress. He’s currently fighting his way over the Bontehoek in the rain, which might spoil his plans further…

Starting with Anthony were Theo, Colin, Gavin and Henry – they have all arrived safely at Slaapkrantz, where they will stay for the night.

Sunday morning action

The rain held off overnight and Batch D, Mike, Casper, Tim, Robbie and Alex all left Rhodes looking determined. They are making good progress towards Chesneywold, except for Robbie, who has now backed off, complaining of a tight chest – he will stop at Chesneywold to reassess.

Ahead of them are Theo, Colin, Gavin and Henry (Batch C), who are now making their way off the Slaapkrantz portage and heading for a muddy Bontehoek portage undeterred.

Anthony (Batch C) is ahead of them, he left Moordenaaarspoort this morning and is closing in on Kranskop support station.

Then we have most of Batch B, Annie, Stewart, Craig, Leon and Fiona, who left Kranskop before first light and are on their way to Brosterlea, after which they will be heading for Romansfontein.

Out front we have Carl and Coen, who left with Batch A from Romansfontein this morning. They all got a bit lost going over Aasvoelberg portage but are now back on track and heading to Hofmey – the pie shop closes at 13h00 on a Sunday but they should make it with time to spare and then head on to Elandsberg.

Early morning action on Day 3

This morning saw Batch A leaving Kranskop at 04h00 - they stopped at Brosterlea just after 08h00 and were gone again by 08h45 - leaving Jonathan there to rest up for the day - he's been struggling since yesterday and will try to catch up again tomorrow.

Carl and Coen seemed to have formed a good partnership - their first day took them all the way from Rhodes past Slaapkrantz, eventually ending at Moordenaarspoort at 21h00. After a good night's rest, they left again at 05h00 and stopped in at Kranskop at 07h30 for their second breakfast - their goal for the day will be Romansfontein.

The rest of Batch B are on their way over the Bontehoek portage and then via Moordenaarspoort to Kranskop for tonight.

Batch C left Rhodes and split up quickly - Anthony was already through Chesneywold by 09h00 and on his way to Slaapkranz. The rest of the batch: Theo, Colin, Gavin and Henry were taking things a bit slower and then took their time at Chesneywold enjoying the hospitality. They'll be aiming for Slaapkrantz today.

Day 3 wrap up

After a few days of good weather, the rain finally came. Batch A seemed to have been least affected as they made it into Romansfontein by early afternoon – Dave, Dawn, Colleen, Janine, Ray, Brad and Chris are staying over there tonight.

They were already heading off to bed by the time Carl and Coen arrived. Another good day for them after an early start from Moordenaarspoort. They had to dodge a storm in a cattle shed at Vegkoppies farm and had a few bike issues which slowed them down a bit but are still feeling good and ready for another big day tomorrow.

The rest of their Batch B riders, Fiona, Leon, Craig, Annie and Stewart arrived at Kranskop at 17h00, after another solid day’s riding – tomorrow they will be heading for Romansfontein.

Behind them we have Anthony (Batch C), who got to Moordenaarspoort at 20h00 after a long, hard day which included a few mechanicals and surviving a big storm on the Bontehoek.

The rest of Batch C, Colin, Gavin, Henry and Theo, all arrived at Slaapkrantz for lunch and decided to stay for the night – they may have to contend with a muddy Bontehoek portage in the morning.

Batch D are all sound asleep in Rhodes, thankful that the rain has finally stopped but no doubt dreading the muddy roads that await them in the morning.

Day 2 round up

Another balmy day on the trail and apart from a brisk wind around midday, things seem to be running according to plan for the riders of Batch A – Dawn, Colleen, Chris, Ray, Brad, Janine, Jonathan and Dave were all in at Kranskop support station by 16h15.

Having left Slaapkranz at 05h00, it’s been a long day in the saddle, so now its time to sit back, relax and enjoy the sun setting over the mountains.

Batch B have cranked things up a notch today – an early split saw Carl and Coen going off the front and quickly through Chesneywold by mid morning. They are currently making their way over the Bontehoek portage and are on track to make it down before sunset and get to Moordenaarspoort for supper.

The rest of the Batch B - Annie, Stewart, Fiona, Craig and Leon - made it comfortably to Slaapkranz and were all in by 15h30, with no plans to go any further for the moment.

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