Written by journalist and television commentator Neil Gardiner, former cycling magazine editor and part-time adventurer Nic Lamond and editor, travel writer and novelist Justin Fox, it promises to encapsulate all the epic moments in the race since its inception in 2004.
Talented photographers, who have sweated their way through the Absa Cape Epic over the years, captured the beauty, drama and scale of the event through their lenses. They include world-renowned photographer Gary Perkin, well-known South African Karin Schermbrucker and world cup downhill racer Sven Martin. Sports and lifestyle photographer Nick Muzik and Tour de France photographer Greg Beadle complete the team.
Says Kevin Vermaak, founder and director of the Absa Cape Epic: “Creating the Absa Cape Epic took every ounce of effort I could muster and a lifetime of emotions. I’ve foregone nights and even weeks of sleep and, in the beginning, it took every cent I had. But every day that passes, I feel privileged to have had the chance to feel true passion for what I do. In some ways, it’s almost a relief to be one of the fortunate few who have the opportunity to turn a hobby into a sustainable business.”
Vermaak continues: “Creating and developing the Absa Cape Epic has been tremendously exhilarating and satisfying. It brings together avid mountain bikers from around the world and shows them new routes, traversing the spectacular byways of the Western Cape. Our management team’s excitement is perhaps akin to the sense of achievement that more than a thousand riders feel after committing an entire year to their preparations and finally crossing the finish line at Lourensford Wine Estate. The event never fails to thrill me, and neither does the anticipation I feel as I look to the Epic’s future, mapped out ahead.”
In this book, the allure of the Untamed African Mountain bike race has been captured by a handful of talented individuals who are widely regarded as the best sports photographers in the business. Vermaak concludes: “Their images, over the years, are in no small way responsible for attracting thousands of riders from round the world. Every year, the event produces great stories of personal triumph, inspiration, honour, the settling of old scores and rising above adversity. I hope readers are inspired to join us on our journey, whether it's blazing the trail at this year’s race or watching from the comfort of their armchair, witnessing this great tale unfold.”
African Epic will be available at between R480 and R500.
You can browse through the book below: