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  1. If you have been around the Western Cape road riding scene for a while the chances are you have heard about the Four Passes route. Or perhaps you have already ridden it and experienced one of the Cape’s best road bike loops. If not, hopefully this article will give you some good insight into what is one of my favourite routes. View full article
  2. This route feature is made possible by Toyota. We were lucky enough to take their Urban Cruiser 1.5 XR out for the trip, more on the car later. The Route As the name suggests, the route is made up of four passes, namely, Sir Lowry’s Pass, Viljoenspas, Franschhoek Pass, and Helshoogte Pass. Where to start? There are a few options. Most riders start in Somerset West to get an early attack in on Sir Lowry’s Pass. I like to start at Specialized Stellenbosch since they have great coffee and snacks for after the ride. Plus those rollers between Stellenbosch and Somerset West aren’t much fun after 120km. Sir Lowry’s Pass Sir Lowry’s Pass is by far the trickiest of the four climbs because it is not the most cycling-friendly road. Thankfully though it is the first pass so you can up and over pretty early in the morning before the traffic starts. A pre-sunrise climb on quiet roads gives you a chance to appreciate the beauty and difficulty of the climb. I find it the hardest of the four passes, mainly because it is so steep and the road is pretty much straight. At least with Franschhoek Pass, you get some switchbacks and corners to break up the mental fatigue of the climb. The viewpoint at the top of Sir Lowry’s gives you a great perspective of where you have ridden from, it’s definitely worth a stop and a quick photo. The first decent food stop is the petrol station on your left as you turn into Grabouw, they have been known to have a DJ outside with pumping tunes over the weekend so you might enjoy some vibes there before heading off again. It’s worth noting that the village on the left just before Grabouw can feel a bit sketchy, thankfully you are heading downhill and are at a proper speed so just keep your eye out for animals crossing the road. Riding the route the other way around (i.e Helshoogte and Franschhoek Pass first) can feel a lot more unsafe as you are climbing pretty slowly up the hill. I’ve been looking forward to driving the new Toyota on the block for a good while, there is something about the Toyota brand that just gets me excited. After Grabouw there is only one more feed stop before you hit Franschhoek. At the base of Viljoenspas after the climb and descent, there is a spaza shop on the lefthand side of the road. Pretty safe to stop at and enjoy a coke. It can get cold on this route so pack some warm gear if the weather looks suspect. When we climbed out of Grabouw on this ride the Wahoo was reading a temperature of 1 whole degree. Viljoenspas Viljoenspas is pretty stunning, especially in winter when you have snow on the peaks in front of you. With Hans se Kop on your left and the upper Grabouw dam it makes for a great photo or just a quick breather while you enjoy the view. After the descent down the other side of Viljoenspas, the road rolls on through the farmlands which gives you some time to collect yourself for the next pass, Franschhoek Pass. The Theewaterskloof Dam is also a great spot to stop and enjoy an energy bar or gel, the dam is full at the moment with all the rain so if the day is warm enough, a sneaky swim will be well worth the effort. If you have ridden in the area, you will know it can get pretty windy on this side of the mountain. Make sure you have someone with you who makes a nice big slipstream, if it’s a windy day the drag along the dam to the base of the pass can be hell. Franschhoek Pass Franschhoek Pass is pretty exceptional, especially on the Villiersdorp side. I see so many cyclists climbing up the Franschhoek side and then turning around at the View Point. They really are missing out on one of the Cape’s (and possibly South Africa’s) most beautiful and rewarding climbs. If water is running low, don’t worry there are a couple of streams flowing most of the year along the pass. Franschhoek Pass is only 2km shorter than Sir Lowry’s Pass but it does feel longer because of all the switchbacks and corners. Watch out for the Valentino Rossi wannabes who think the pass is their personal race track on the weekends, it is an incredible road to drive as well so unfortunately, it does attract the fast and furious. Best to stick as far left as possible and try not to ride next to each other here. Franschhoek is very well known for its wine and food so it makes for an amazing lunch stop, since most of the climbing is done you might even enjoy some beer or wine with lunch. If you are passing through on a Saturday the Farmers Market is a must. Great food that you won’t have to wait too long for. Toyota has done well to beef it up a little to give it that authentic Toyota offroad styling. It is called the Urban Crusier so don’t expect it to stick with its bigger brother the Land Cruiser. The 1.5 engine though is more than capable in an urban setting and on the open road. As cyclists we need space and the Urban Cruiser delivers on this well. The space inside the car is great, with plenty of room for kit bags and floor pumps. With the seats folded down, it swallows a road bike easily. After Franschhoek it’s basically a hop, skip, and a jump to the finish in Stellenbosch. If you have paced yourself well the drag to Pniel and the climb up Helshoogte should go by quickly unless the South Easter is blowing of course. That can make the road Franschhoek to the left turn at Boschndal very interesting. I don’t know why but Pniel is one of my favourite little towns in the Cape. It just feels like it has so much history and personality. If you have the time it is definitely worth exploring a little bit. If Burgers and Beer is more your thing after a ride, Stellenbosch has plenty of that, another great reason to start and end in Stellies. The extra lift in the suspension and higher body height than that of the Yaris for example gives you a lot of confidence on gravel roads. The ride is very comfortable with little to no body roll in tight corners. It may be called the Urban Cruiser but it will be comfortable in pretty much every terrain, apart from hardcore 4x4 tracks. Route overview The 130km route gives you about 1800m of climbing and the steepest gradient is 7.7% GPX Route Download: https://ridewithgps.com/routes/36969110 Ready for your own adventure? For more info on the Toyota Urban Cruiser click here.
  3. About this Event Wahoo Fight Night Presented by Cycle Lab and Toyota ! 10 JUNE 2021 Join us for an evening of excitement, competition and loads of fun. You can attend the actual event, where we showcase the Wahoo indoor experience in-store or you can participate from your lounge and join in on the FUN. This year we will be hosting 5 events across the country and the Grand Final. Each event we will be running qualifiers for top 3 times for Men's and Ladies Categories, if you WIN at one of the events you qualify for the final event in December. See prizes HERE - https://fightnight.wahoofitness.co.za/prizes-en/ EVENT FORMAT - FROM HOME The Event will be live streamed via the Cycle Lab social pages How to enter to WIN the Spirit Award from home - A WAHOO ELEMNT BOLT: Comment on the Live event streams on Facebook or Youtube with: #wahoofightnight and Show us why you deserve the Spirit Award (no nudes;) Follow these pages: Facebook:@toyotasouthafrica, @CycleLab and @IkhambiDistribution Instagram: @toyota_sa, @cyclelab_za and @ikhambi_distribution_ Post your Spirit video or photo (selected posts will air on Toyota Cadence Cycling Show) and remember these hastags: #wahoofightnight #spiritaward Tag a cycling buddy for an extra entry. *The Spirit Award will only be handed over at the GRAND FINALE at the end of the Year - but you can enter through the whole Fight Night Series. How to submit an entry for 1 of 5 Wahoo Swag Pack up for grabs: Follow the WAHOO FIGHT NIGHT STRAVA Group: https://www.strava.com/clubs/607251 Complete a 5 min activity OF ANY KIND (Indoor Training/Cycle/Run/Yoga with your dogs etc) on STRAVA between 19H00 - 22H00 on 10 June 2021 Post an image to the WAHOO FIGHT NIGHT STRAVA Group of you doing your activity with the hashtag #wahoofightnight EVENT FORMAT - AT CYCLE LAB The Race will be a 1km KOM sprint in Zwift in the Wattopia Map. The Zwift App will automatically track your time on the segment. Fastest 3 times for Men and women will battle it out in the Final at the end of the night. Toyota Drivers - Complimentary car washes will be available while you are pushing your Watts, first come first serve. Beer and Pizza will be provided for courage and carbs respectively;) There will also be a spot prize on the night for the participant who embodies the Wahooligan ethos best on the night - We call this the Wahoo Spirit Award. Anyone can stand a chance to win - Just for participating! We will also give a Prize away for whoever sets the most-average time out of all the participants. We call this the Average Wahooligan Prize. Qualifiers kick off at 19h30, the Finalists will have the opportunity to cleat in, so please bring your Pedals and Shoes in case you are in the Top 3. Please Note that there will be a weigh-in for the finals, to ensure that all participants are on equal footing - NO E-Doping. Bring friends, meet the Cycle Lab, Toyota and Wahoo teams along with some very special guests. FAQs Event Schedule ? 18:00 - 18:30 Arrival and warm up beers - The DJ will be dropping some tunes and event organisers taking names for qualifying starts. 18:30 The Fight Night Hero Race will kick off - a demo of the Race by some Local Legends. 19:00 Wahoo FIGHT NIGHT qualifiers commence. 20:30 Pizza and some more beers ... 21:00 - 21:30 Category finals and prize giving. How do I enter? https://fightnight.wahoofitness.co.za What clothing should I wear? Come as you are, but if you're going to have a go at the hill climb you might want to wear something you don't mind getting hot in. Full cycling kit is also welcome.
  4. In their own words Toyota's new RAV4 "is built for outdoor adventurers". So instead of browsing their website online. At your desk. With a mouse. Why not browse it on a 1.8km track on a mountain bike? If you like bikes and tech I'm sure you'll appreciate this innovative campaign. Take a look... Click here to view the article
  5. The new Toyota RAV4 is built for outdoor adventurers – the kind of guys who spend their weekends hiking and cycling, and not behind their computer screens surfing the net. But if they’re on the mountain biking trails, how will they explore Toyota’s new RAV4 website? Unless of course, Toyota takes the website to them. Which is exactly what Toyota did with the help of their award-winning agencies, Hellocomputer and Draftfcb. On a 1,8km cycle track at the Bryanston Cycle Park, they literally built a real-life RAV4 Outdoor Website, which not only looked like the online version, but behaved like it too. So, cyclists could use their mountain bike as a cursor, and navigate through the unique selling points of the new RAV4 in their environment. The Tech. The Tools. The Tricks. As per the online website, the outdoor version was built with the help and technical skills of thingking. The course was divided into the models, safety, design, interior and book a test drive sections. It also had some other quirky online additions like loading bars, a refresh button (that sprayed water at the cyclists), and a competition. But what made this website so unique, other than the fact it was all built out of natural materials and stood 20ft high along kilometres of dirt track, is that the innovative tech used actually made it act like a website. For example, as the cyclists moved from one section to the next, they triggered infrared motion sensors that highlighted the section they were in on the browser bar. In each section, cyclists were given a choice of buttons, that when selected, would use pumps, motors and other hacked appliances (even a leaf blower) to load the chosen content. They were also able to Tweet along the way by hitting the wooden Twitter icons. At the end of the track, cyclists collected a “test drive and win” ticket that instantly printed out from a tree stump. They were then able to continue to adventure in a real RAV4 in the car park. The real-life RAV4 Outdoor Website also went online so that all other weekend warriors could have an adventure of their own. Between 9 and 5, of course. “Toyota wanted to introduce South Africa to the all-new RAV4 in a bold and dynamic way and the world's first-ever outdoor website delivered by Hellocomputer is just that,” Toyota’s Senior Manager of Marketing Communications and Planning, and outdoorsy guy, Pieter Klerck said.
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