The event is the second round of the 2016 Nissan TrailSeeker Gauteng Series and offers participants four different distances – the 70km marathon, 40km half-marathon, 20km fun race and 10km fun ride.
The routes explore some of the best riding in Pretoria East, with a completely new Half-marathon route.
Half-marathon racers can expect a rough start on old farm roads before hitting some smoother district gravel roads. The first major climb, Leeuwkop, comes after 10km with a stimulating singletrack descent down to Tyger Valley College. From there, another ascent up Leeuwkop, this time a challenging singletrack climb for 400 metres, before heading back to Hazeldean Valley Trails for another 20km for singletrack riding to the finish.
The marathon has a total of 600 metres of ascent with a start loop along the banks of the Pienaars River before heading out to the Boschkop Trails to the East. There’s a gradual, but steady drag for the first 25km before turning at Legends MX along undulating farm roads towards Rosemary Hill. Riders will do a 10km loop around the Rosemary Hill Trails network before heading back to the finish along Hazeldean Valley Trails via Boschkop Trails.
Last year’s women’s winner and South African champion, Robyn de Groot (Ascendis Health), is on the start list, but is still recovering from a shoulder injury so won’t be on the start line. That will leave a fairly open race with the likes of Theresa Ralph (Galileo Risk) and Adrienne Moolman sure to be gunning for the top step of the marathon podium.
The men’s race sees a collection of some of the country’s top marathon racers, including last year’s winner, Nico Bell (Team NAD), HB Kruger (Team Telkom), fresh off his win at the Knynsa Marathon, Grant Usher (Kargo Pro), Thinus Redlinghuys and 2015 South African champion, Gawie Combrinck (Team NAD).
As usual, the race village will cater well for spectators and offer a relaxing environment for riders and supporters before the start and after the finish. Entries will be available until prior to the start at www.trailseekerseries.co.za.
Nissan TrailSeeker Hazeldean schedule of events:
Venue: Cowhouse Market, Hazeldean Valley
Friday 8 July
10h00–16h00: Bruce Reyneke Cycles, Graham Road, Lynwood
10h00–16h00: Torq Zone Cycles, Doringkloof
10h00–16h00: Bruce Reyneke Cycles, Featherbrook Village, West Rand
Saturday 9 July
06h00-13h00: Cowhouse Market, Hazeldean Valley
Race start times:
Saturday, 9 July
06h45: Riders briefing
08h00: Start 70km
08h45: Start 40km
09h50: Start 20km
10h20: Start 10km
13h00: Prize giving
For more information on Saturday’s event, visit www.trailseekerseries.co.za