Absa Cape Epic founder Kevin Vermaak has said the event’s success is down to a continued focus on innovation which attracts professional and amateur riders from around the world. The multi-stage race won the Sport Participation Event of the Year Award at the Discovery Sport Industry Awards last month.
Vermaak said that the organisers were always looking at new ways to change the format in order to create the best experience for participants.
Vermaak said the most important thing for the Absa Cape Epic team was making sure they do South Africa proud: ‘We’re flattered that so many of the world’s best mountain bikers come out to South Africa every year to race ABSA Cape Epic and make it such an important event in their race schedule.’
Vermaak added: ‘All we can do is try and make it better for them and make sure they get more and more media exposure for participating in the race. For the amateurs that come from all over the world we just want to make sure they get an excellent mountain bike experience in South Africa and that we do the country proud.’
The route changes regularly which Vermaak said is down to the willingness of local land owners to welcome the Epic through their property: ‘We change the route every year so we are lucky that we aren’t stuck in the same format. More and more farmers and landowners are welcoming us to come through their land because obviously they get a lot of TV exposure and so luckily we can take the race to new areas every year. That is the heart of our organisation, that we try and innovate every year and luckily we manage to come up with new ideas.’
This year’s edition will take place from 23rd – 30th March with Vermaak revealing that plans were already underway for more changes in 2015: ‘We have got a lot of new ideas in the pipeline even for the 2015 race, in fact it’s somewhat of a format change so there will be lots of new ideas to grow the event still further in the coming year.'