About the TransCape MTB Adventure
TransCapeMTB has pioneered the premium, small field, stage race concept in South Africa and it is our mission to ensure that the event continues to deliver one of the very best multi-stage, endurance mountain biking experience is the world.
In addition to offering a truly world class customer experience, TransCapeMTB also has a mission to ensure we make a real difference to the people through who’s land we travel. This we do via various fundraising activities that benefit numerous charities and education initiatives along our route. Our initiatives also focus heavily on job creation and skills development.
One of the things we incontrovertibly believe in is that each of us creates our own history. This will certainly hold true for the TransCape MTB team as we build an event that we will be proud of in the years to come.
Right now, the cornerstone we’re anchoring this dream on, is a ride that will unite each and every rider who joins the TansCape MTB family. And once you have joined us, you will help us write that history.
Come join us…
You’ve heard the cliché ‘It is about the journey, not the destination’, right? Well, the thing is that you cannot have a proper journey without a Point A and a Point B. This is what first got us started on the TransCape MTB concept …
We’ve done dozens of South African MTB Stage Races and rides, and the ones we’ve enjoyed most have been those events that took us on a linear journey through this wonderful country we call home. You start somewhere real and you finish somewhere real.
Progression along a multi-day journey such as this goes hand in hand with your personal transformation, passing through the landscape experiencing the scenery from forest to fynbos to grassland to desert – and then all the way back again – your soul and your spirit will soar in tandem with the geographic ebb and flow.
We’ve said all along that for us, ‘it is about the ride, not about the race’. We want all our TransCape MTB riders to have the time to immerse themselves within every nuance their route will offer on the day. The smell of the Karoo scrub as you pedal through the Rooiberg; the distant rumble of thunder as summer storms strafe the plains beyond Calitzdorp; the raucous racketing call of Knysna touraco in the Podocarpus Yellowwoods towering above you and your bike as you navigate the forests from the starting line…
Don’t get us wrong. We know the needs of the mountain biking fraternity, and that there will always be people out there keen to put the hammer down and race for the line. But we also want those Regular Joe’s, Weekend Warriors and Middle-Packers to be an integral part of this amazing TransCape MTB journey.
Our dream is that our route organiser will make you fall in love with the countryside the route will traverse. Small towns you’ve barely heard of will pop up on your radar and, instead of creating the archetypal race village, we’d like our riders to disperse into these “dorpies”, eating “koeksisters” and downing mugs of “boeretroos”, while soaking up the special spirit of the “Platteland”.
To end off, we feel that some of the humanity has been lost in the process of creating MTB races which pass through towns without bringing lasting benefit. TransCape MTB will be slick, but it will always have heart, and we will engage with everyone – including those non-bike people we pass on the way – to share our special brand of passion.
And yes, everyone who enters this amazing race WILL be a VIP!!
The Team that keeps the TransCape wheels turning
Behind every iconic sporting event there is a person, or persons, who had the vision and desire to make the event a reality. Coupled with hard work and perseverance, along with the support of other like-minded people, it can be turned into a successful sporting occasion that others dream, strive and train hard to compete in.
While the TransCape MTB race is still in its infant stages, and far from iconic, establishing a premium, small field, multi-stage mountain bike race, that not only local enthusiasts, but cyclists from all over the world will aspire to compete in, is the brain child of race pioneer Lenore Collett.
With her love of cycling and the breathtaking Garden Route, Klein Karoo and Winelands regions of South Africa, Lenore dreamed about creating a unique mountain biking experience for competitors in the Western Cape and turned it (her dream) into a reality hosting the inaugural TransCape MTB race in February 2015.
With 100 intrepid cyclists participating in this first race it quickly became clear that the TransCape is so much more than just a bike race – It’s a journey across the most beautiful regions of the country and an adventure participants won’t forget!
Exactly what Lenore, a commodity trader for a large international trading company in Johannesburg, was hoping to create, and with hard work, will grow and flourish into a must do event for any adventurous cyclist – a “bucket list” event for mountain bikers if you will!
And like a bicycle needs many moving parts to work so does any successful sporting event. In the case of the TransCape, Lenore is the frame – the core around which her dedicated, experienced team is built.
Strengthening this frame is Lenore’s husband Wayne, a very keen mountain biker and endurance sport enthusiast who grew up in the Eastern Cape where he learnt to ride his first bike on the many single tracks (called ‘sheep paths’ in those days) of the family farm.
Also a commodity trader by day Wayne spends his night’s planning TransCape MTB routes in collaboration with route director, Andrew White, and doing whatever the boss (Lenore) suggests.
Having taken into account the suggestions about the route, from the 2015 race riders, Wayne cannot wait for competitors to experience what they have in store for them next year. “It’s again going to be one incredible journey!”
A sentiment shared by Lenore’s sister, Irmarie, the event’s accommodation, catering and administrative manager.
As can be expected on a seven-day stage race of over 700km’s a comfortable padded saddle would be every competitors dream and while Lenore and her team can’t provide that, they can see to everyone’s creature comforts when racing for the day is over.
At the helm of creating this memorable off course experience for participants is the energetic Irmarie. With a real passion for cooking, hyperactive by her own admission and having a love of socializing with friends and family around a fire with a glass of good red wine, she is the ideal person to see to the social and accommodation needs of the riders.
And while she has her own successful Kinesiology practice in Pretoria, she has an unbridled passion for the TransCape MTB which stems from Lenore.
Darren Herbst is the operational director of ASG Events and takes over the reigns of this monumental operational machine from 2017. Darren is also at the helm of 15 other ASG Events annually.
Steering the riders in the right direction and finding the amazing routes they (the riders) traverse during the race is route co-ordinator, Andrew White (in conjunction with Wayne).
A native of the little village of Greyton (one of the TransCape stops) he loves exploring, following his nose, until he gets somewhere new and most importantly finding paths and routes connecting places that combine a few important elements: interest, value, beauty, simplicity and ‘economy’. Don’t send this outdoors guy up a cliff simply to drop down the other side when there is a perfectly good way around – via trail or track.
With his involvement in the TransCape Andrew has been given the opportunity to find a balance of the above elements, between Knysna and Franschhoek, and created a memorable route for the first race.
Although the route for the event is fairly fixed he is not one to rest on his laurels and believes, along with Wayne, there is always tweaking that can be done to improve the experience for participants, ensuring that riders, who come back year after year, can appreciate how the route has improved.
Corne & Gerald
Playing an invaluable role in the chain of command in the TransCape is Corné Grobler, owner of MCG Consultants. Having been involved with event management and sponsorship activations for 21 years Corné has loads of experience and is the ideal person to co-ordinate logistics, deal with social investment responsibilities and procure those all-important sponsors to help keep an event of this nature growing and moving forward.
Along with her positive attitude, a love of working outdoors and the belief that if your work is your passion then work will be fun, Corné adds an exhilarating dimension to the TransCape team. She also confesses, “I love everything the TransCape stands for, the positive energy and leadership from Lenore and the awesome team that makes it possible.”
Artist, television producer, cookbook author and owner of MediaMix @ Work, a television/marketing/designing company, Leana Pool is the person responsible for spreading the word about the race via social media and e-marketing.
After studying in the sciences, she came to her creative senses and studied where her passion lay: designing and television production. After completing many digital marketing courses, having a finger in the pie of the making two movies producing many TV advertisements and sport programmes for SABC, Discovery and SuperSport Leana is a creative force that fits perfectly into the TransCape family. For her the challenge of exposing and marketing the race is a no brainier and working with the passionate and exuberant Lenore and her sister, Irmarie, is contagious and a blessing.
And then of course there are the many locals along the way that form such an integral part of TransCape. Landowners, schools, guesthouse/hotel partners, chefs, police, traffic officials, etc. without them, a grand event of this nature would simply not be possible.
Finally, the last and the most important team members of the TransCape, that will keep the event growing and going forward, are the people with the peddle power. Without you, our valued riders, the TransCape does not exist. It is our mission, given the trust you have put in us by taking a week out of your life to come and do our event, to ensure that it is the best week of your life!
Chef Nic van Wyk
CHEF NIC VAN WYK is as well known for his Kokkedoor-judging role as for his gutsy flavours. He has a penchant for peasant food – from Provence and North Africa to the Little Karoo – to which he brings a modern sensibility. An advocate for seasonal eating long before it was fashionable, he looks to the freshly grown, the just-harvested and local treasures for inspiration.
Nic co-judges Kokkedoor , the award winning cooking series on Kyknet, with Hetta van Deventer-Terblanche. The series is currently in season two with season three scheduled for shooting early next year.
A keen sportsman, in his earlier years cricket, Nic now spends his free time in the saddle, exploring the greater Western Cape on his mountain bike.
Classically trained at the Institute of Culinary Arts in Stellenbosch, Nic co-founded Terroir in 2006, then voted Eat Out Best Restaurant in South Africa. Nic also proved his mettle at La Colombe with Franck Dangereux, and travelled overseas before returning to Kleine Zalze Lodge where he spent four years. Nic then joined Diemersdal to open the renowned Diemersdal Eatery in an old converted barn.
Nic is back on his old stomping ground with the opening of bistro 13 in Stellenbosch. Situated on Welmoed Estate, locals can enjoy breakfast, lunch and dinner with his unique stamp of classical dishes with a distinctive South African thread.
Even though he has access to the world’s finest ingredients, explored haute cuisine and travelled the world, the dish he yearns for most is his grandma’s sweet and sour liver with onions on toast.
Nic’s approach to TransCape MTB
Nic is in his element with this project. Traditions and ingredients native to an area inspire and excite him. As the race moves from Knysna to Stellenbosch Nic will be working alongside people in the area, from working in their kitchens, to conceptualising dishes that capture the essence of each stop. This atmosphere of sharing and exploring, on the route and in the kitchen, will mirror in the communal breaking of bread, with the evening meal being enjoyed in the spirit of the long table and the experiences it brings.