Captives of Chronos

Time, the old saying goes, waits for no man. And nowhere is that more relevant than in the race of truth: the battle against the clock within the boundaries of Oak Valley and Paul Cluver Estates. At 47 kilometres long, the mid-race time trial in 2023 is more taxing than any which have preceded it in the history of the Absa Cape Epic. Designed to continue the relentless tests which the nineteenth edition sets for the teams, it features 875 metres of climbing too, all of which comes in steep ramps rather than long drags. The course is packed with singletrack, making it a test of skill as well as fitness. Maintaining a rhythm to climb twisting trails – like Berg Adder – and then descend with the required aggression – down trails like Puff Adder, Vissie’s Magic and Sounds of Silence – will require absolute focus. It will be a day that, despite its composition as a small section of the overall route, will test partnerships from start to finish.