Compared to Eddy Merckx, the greatest pro-cyclist ever, Marianne Vos, is now regarded as the greatest female cyclist of her generation. She became World Champion at the age of 19 and has dominated the sport for the past decade in road races, time trials, and Cyclo-Cross. Compared accolade for accolade, Vos is rated as the best or at least most decorated and recognised cyclist in the world at the moment.

In her extraordinary career, Vos has made huge strides and boasts an impressive list of accolades. She is a 10-time Dutch National Champion for Road Time trial and Cyclo-Cross; two-time European Road Race Champion; two-time European Cyclo-Cross Champion; three-time UCI Road World Champion, winner of two Olympic gold medals and with more than 300 career race wins on the top of her list.

Through their involvement with the Momentum 947 Cycle Challenge, the Momentum Toyota professional cycling team and now the Cape Town Cycle Tour (formerly Pick n Pay Cape Argus Momentum Cycle Tour) the financial giant has invested significantly in cycling in South Africa over the past couple of years.

Earlier this year, Momentum announced a continuation of their long term support for international cycling champion Ashleigh Moolman Pasio - last year’s winner of the women’s section of the Momentum 947 Cycle Challenge. Momentum’s sponsorship will take Ashleigh all the way to the 2016 Olympics in Brazil where a podium finish is anticipated. Ashleigh is on top form having made her first Commonwealth Games appearance earlier this year in Glasgow, with a solid performance, taking bronze in the women's road race.

Carel Bosman, Momentum Sponsorship Manager comments, "Supporting women in sport is an integral part of our diverse sponsorship portfolio, and we are very excited to host Marianne Vos in South Africa ahead of her debut in the 947 Cycle Challenge. It is an exciting time for cycling in South Africa and we believe that through our partnership we are able to create a platform for mentorship, development and support for equality and diversity in sport. Historically women have struggled to gain equal recognition in sports, but great strides are being made in allowing women to excel in cycling and we are glad to be able to contribute towards driving this shift.

“In Ashleigh South Africa now has a world-class cyclist and we want South Africans to get excited about the reality of being in contention for medals in Rio. Before then, we wish Marianne Vos, Ashleigh Moolman Pasio and all participating in the 947 Cycle Challenge well, as they tackle one of South Africa’s greatest cycling events,” adds Bosman.

Both Marianne Vos and Ashleigh Moolman Pasio will be participating in both the Twitter ride on Saturday 15 November and the 947 Cycle Challenge on Sunday 16 November 2014.

Both Ashleigh and Marianne will be spending some time with local ladies teams to inspire and give valuable tips on their cycling success. A media conference will also be held once Marianne and Ashleigh are in South Africa.

For more on the Momentum 947 Cycle Challenge see: www.momentum/for/you/sponsorships/cycle-challenge.