I am to blame for an assist in the tumble my partner took today as going round a technical switchback I had to correct myself and forced Thinus to lose momentum and dive onto the closest rock he could find, which was not difficult today as the terrain was super tough. As mentioned yesterday we started with the Witzenberg wagon trail, which turned more into a 750m vertical hike over about 8km, it was super tough and after we finally reached the first water point at 20km on just over 2 hours of riding – well hiking. Shortly after this Thinus discovered one of those deep dark places one goes to in the Cape Epic and that one has to work through and if your partner is attentive and to assist you in fighting off those demons. As Thinus took a natural break I decided to ride on as he is normally faster than I am and would catch up easily, not this time as the free space provided allowed those demons to enter. Not sure what all went through his mind in missing his family, to why are you here doing this and so forth. Fortunately we got through this and I got the customery chirp when I took a tumble not quite getting round a corner in a gracious style: one all it was.
All and all it was a super tough day but we managed to get through it and now we ready ourselves for Stage 3 of 104kms and 2150m of climbing, or so they claim. Let’s see and hope we can be strong and fast enough to make the cut off time in Wellington. The terrain promises to be slightly easier than the extremes we were put through today. The craziness after getting to the finish line to sort out bikes from the bike wash to showering for the massages and getting food in the body is quite a logistical process and takes up precious time from resting the bruised and bartered legs. It was great to see familiar faces on the route, thanks Marilize and James for the support at WP 1 – we dig the Columbia stuff and the Westin is like a second family. Again, thanks for all the support and for the call before the start Kuc. We appreciate it and hope we can make coach Alasdair and our supporters proud.