BULLS Charge Towards Absa Cape Epic

Germany’s Team BULLS will make their 15th appearance in the Absa Cape Epic in 2022. Having won four editions – with Karl Platt, Stefan Sahm and Urs Huber – they are among the race’s most successful outfits. This year they will be represented by Urs Huber and Simon Schneller, as well as by Alban Lakata and Hansueli Stauffer. 

Team BULLS made their first Absa Cape Epic appearance in 2007. Since then, they have been ever present, with Karl Platt flying the German bike brand’s colours prominently in 14 editions. Along with riders like Stefan Sahm, Urs Huber, and Simon Stiebjahn the team has claimed four victories along with seven further podium places. In 2022 Platt will be racing in the NTT Masters competition, seeking to add more Absa Cape Epic titles to the five elite crowns he owns. The famous BULLS name will thus adorn the chests of Huber, Simon Schneller, Hansueli Stauffer and Alban Lakata in the men’s race.  

 Schneller teams up with the 2016 Absa Cape Epic winner, Huber, for the second time, in 2022. The pair have unfinished business as a partnership, given that Schneller fell ill ahead of Stage 4, while he and Huber were in second overall. “Sure, my illness was a shame, but I have mostly good memories from last year’s Absa Cape Epic; with a stage victory and two more stage podiums” he recalled. “At the end we also could celebrate the overall podium within the team. Plus, another stage win, so it was quite a good race for us as Team BULLS in total. But for sure, my dream to stand on the overall podium at the end is still there and I know it’s not impossible. That was a big motivation during the cold winter months in Europe.” 

“The story for the team is the same as it was last year” Huber somewhat enigmatically said of their goals for 2022. Before elaborating: “We will be fighting for stage wins, podiums on individual stages and for the general classification podium at the end of the Absa Cape Epic. But we come into the 2022 race happy knowing that the competition will be much stronger this year.” 

“The Absa Cape Epic is simply the most important stage race in mountain biking” Huber praised. “It’s set in a beautiful landscape and attracts the strongest competition. It also features the best coverage, which is very important for our sponsors.”  

While Schneller and Huber have some disappointment to overcome, Lakata is arguably among the unluckiest riders in the race’s history. The 3-time Marathon World Champion has finished on the second step of the Absa Cape Epic podium twice. At the age of 42 his chances of adding the illusive victory may be lower than his teammates, but that won’t stop the Austrian from giving it his best shot.  

“Honestly, at this stage I have no specific expectation for this year’s Absa Cape Epic, but I’m definitely looking forward to coming back to race in the elite category!” Lakata exclaimed. “It´s been two years now since I last raced the Absa Cape Epic in elite. With Hansueli I also have a new partner for the race, so there are some unknown factors involved. We had a good time and some good results together at Andalucía Bike Race last year, so I´m confident it will work out nicely for us at the Absa Cape Epic too. We will give our best, but right now I personally have no specific goal for the 2022 edition. It could be going for our own result, or in support of, Huber and Schneller, of Team BULLS 1… We´ll know after the first days.”  

“It’s an honour for me to ride the Absa Cape Epic with Alban” Stauffer said. “He’s a great athlete. I’m looking forward to an interesting and an unforgettable race with him. As a new member of Team BULLS, I can benefit from the experience of my teammates. It’s going to be a great race, with cool trails and a good team spirit. I’m happy to take part in the most important stage race in the world.” 

To see Team BULLS, as well as all the other men’s and women’s squads in action, visit cape-epic.com from the 20th to the 27th of March 2022 where mountain biking fans will be able to watch the racing action live.