The biggest success story of the series thus far is undoubtedly Philip Buys (Scott Factory Racing), the overall winner of the inaugural Nissan TrailSeeker Series.

When Buys competed in his first Nissan TrailSeeker race, his only claim to fame was that he was a talented young rider.

Lourens Luus one of the prodigies of the Nissan TrailSeeker Series

If his career is fast-forwarded a few years, we find Buys now in the 18th position of the UCI’s cross-country rankings.

The organizers of the Nissan TrailSeeker Series can be forgiven for being proud of the success achieved by Buys. After all, it was probably while racing in one of their races that he began to realize that he was good enough to be a winner.

Buys still has great loyalty to the Nissan TrailSeeker Series. Whenever he is able to fit it in his busy racing schedule, he competes in one of the races in the Nissan TrailSeeker Series, which he then usually wins.

The 21-year-old Lourens Luus (RE:CM), who finished second in the MTN Tulbagh and Attakwas ultra-races, can also be considered to be a prodigy of the Nissan TrailSeeker Series, even though he has not yet competed in as many of their races.

Adrien Niyonshut, who is currently riding for the MTN-Qhubeka pro-continental road team in Europe, also did his apprenticeship in the TrailSeeker Series.

And so the list just goes on and on.

It will be interesting to see which of the young guns will step up to the plate during the current Nissan TrailSeeker Series, preparing themselves to take on the world’s best a year or two from now.

The series starts on 25 May with the Curro/Hazeldean event in Pretoria East.

The first race is usually a huge favourite because of its central location and fantastic single tracks.

The organizers have promised that the riders will be treated to even more mind-blowing, hand-built trails, exhilarating river crossings and fast farm roads.

The Nissan TrailSeeker Diamond Rush in Cullinan on 6 July will be the second event.

“If you take to mountain biking like women take to diamonds, do not miss this race,” is how the organizers advertise this event.

The route traverses areas that are inaccessible under normal circumstances due to diamond mining.

Winding single and jeep tracks take you through pristine areas and over river crossings where you can still stop and drink the clear water.

The 70km route takes riders through areas where wild game roam, and even past lions.

Riders will also ride on the fringe of a massive waterfall, as well as through a cave.

The Nissan TrailSeeker Van Gaalens (14 September) starts on the Van Gaalen Cheese Farm, an active cheese factory in the Skeerpoort area.

An abundance of river-bank single track, extreme climbs and technical descents will provide an excellent experience of the Magaliesberg.

It will be an extreme mountain-bike exhilaration that should not be underestimated, even by the most seasoned mountain bikers.

On the 5th of October, the fourth race of the Nissan TrailSeeker Series will take place at a new venue that was introduced last year, namely the Hakahana.

Situated just east of the Hartebeespoort Dam in Gauteng, Hakahana consists of farmland that is covered with dry, arid savannah.

This new venue adheres to all the prized criteria of the TrailSeeker Series and it is also near to both Pretoria and Johannesburg.

Tim Fair, the route director, says he is excited to showcase this beautiful new area with its exciting trails to the riders.

Besides riding through a game reserve and around the Gerotek race track, riders will be tested on some challenging climbs and technical descents. Much of the single track was hand-built and it upholds the ‘fun’ aspect of the TrailSeeker Series.

The last race in the Nissan TrailSeeker Series will be the Down and Dirty in Centurion on 2 November.

The area is famous among mountain bikers for its legendary rocky outcrops.

Fast jeep tracks, rhythmic short climbs and exhilarating single tracks through the forest make this route something to remember.

For more information about the upcoming races please visit www.advendurance.com

The dates for the 2013 Nissan TrailSeeker Series are:

25 May Nissan TrailSeeker 1 - Curro Hazeldean

6 July Nissan TrailSeeker 2 - Cullinan

14 Sept Nissan TrailSeeker 3 - Van Gaalen

5 Oct Nissan TrailSeeker 4 - Hakahana

2 Nov Nissan TrailSeeker 5 - Cornwall Hill