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[Absa Cape Epic]

The Final Category Wrap

By Absa Cape Epic, 03/29/23, 1:45AM HST


Who won the Absa Cape Epic Age Group Categories

Eight days. Extreme weather conditions. Quality, competitive racing. All in all, another great Absa Cape Epic.

The Grand Finale of the Cape Epic – 80km from the Lourensford Wine Estate to the Val de Vie Estate – traversed some of the most popular trails of the Cape Winelands with the famous G-spot, the Botmaskop climb and the Bobsleigh section just to name a few; the perfect recipe for a celebration of the Untamed.

It was a somewhat longer and harder final stage from what riders got used to over the years, but it set the stage for one last dance in what was one of the most challenging and competitive races in years.


With their Grand Finale stage win, in just 3 hours, 42 minutes, and 38 seconds, South Africans Oliver “Pinner” Munnik and Rogan Smart (Signal Racing) secure their second place on the Amateur category podium of the 2023 Absa Cape Epic. Chileans Felipe and Cristobal Sandoval (Sandomac) got another podium spot and overall leaders Australian Mitchell Docker and his American teammate Ian Boswell (Digger and the Doughboy) took the last spot on the day. 

These results did not impact the overall standings. Boswell and Docker, won the first ever white jerseys for the Amateur category with a time of 30:43.52. Second overall were Munnik and Smart (+18.48) and Australian brothers Hayden and Oliver (James Brothers, +53.49) took the last step on the podium.

“What a great finish to an amazing event. It such a beautiful day and nice routes that I kind of forgot the craziness of the previous days,” said Boswell.

Docker added: “All you want from a race, no matter the category, is to have some good competition and to challenge each other. And that is what we got.”

Refilwe Mogorosi and Omphile Mataung (Exxaro Academy Ladies) won every single stage of this year’s Absa Cape Epic Amateur category; the only time they did not stand on the top step of the podium was the Prologue. They won the final stage in 5:42.42. Once again in second place was South African combo Buhle Beauty Nontobeko Ngobese and Ricci-Lee Brookstone (ABSA SheUntamed 2023). Newcomers to the podium Michelle Rudolph and Cherise Odendaal (Silostrat) came in third place.

Mogorosi and Mataung’s overall time was 48:00.25. Ngobese and Brookstone finished second (+2:34.14) and in third place was Nicola Biani and Kerry-Lee Pienaar (SheUntamed Bellas, +4:46.01).

NTT Masters

Abs Cape Epic legend Karl Platt defended his NTT Masters title in style with his new teammate Tomi Misser (Legends BULLS:MONDRAKER). They crossed the Grand Finale finish-line behind stage winners Czech combination of Pavel Gonda and Jan Fisnar (Czech Rockets Outfindo), but their overall glory was secured.

The Czechs’ stage time was 3:42.46. For the first time on the podium this week was Finland’s Sami Inkinen and Max Taam (Virta) in third place.

Overall, Platt and Misser’s winning time was 30:10.39. South Africans Craig Uria and Michael Posthumus (Restonic), who led the category race for a few days, were second (+20.07). The Czech combination was third (+1:31.15).

Eight winning days in total. That’s the story for Sweden’s Jennie Stenerhag and Switzerland’s Esther Süss ( ladies) in the NTT Masters women's race after winning the final stage in 4:44.36. Carina Mohr and Nina Hartleb (Scott Sport Germany) and South Africans Tessa Keers and Nicola Walker ( were once again second and third respectively on the stage.

Stenerhag and Süss' overall time was 39:01.43. The German pairing were second (3:55.08) and the South Africans third (5:47.18).

As a combination Stenerhag and Süss also won the Women’s race in 2017. Süss was also one part of the winning Mixed pairing in 2011.

Grand Masters

Once again, Dutchman Bart Brentjens and Brazil’s Abraao Azevedo (KMC Mtb Racing) were crowned Absa Cape Epic Grand Masters category winners. They completed their domination with a win in the Grand Finale (3:52.26). Second on the day were Italians Loris Tomat and Michele Gallina (FVG) and third place went to Argentinians Leondro Oddino and Leonardo Alochis (Oddis Nuts).

Brentjens and Azevedo’s overall winning time was 31:45.07. The Italians were second (2:18.07) and SCOTT-SRAM Old Dudes from Switzerland Thomas Frischknecht and Urs Gerig finished in third place overall (+2:36.24).

Great Grand Masters

Stage 7 saw another stage win for the French pairing of Rene Vallee and Alain Broglia (Forestiere Rosti 2). They won the final stage in 4:49.19. South Africans Graham Monteith and Robin Olbrich (Emergency Diesel) were second and Bart Meganck (Bel) and Cyrille Chossegross (Fr, 63CC/APHM) third.

There was no change in the overall standings with Vallee and Broglia riding to overall victory with a time of 39:44.06. In the end the gap between second and third was just more than a minute, but Meganck and Chossegross were second (+2:17.29) and South Africans Monteith and Olbrich took the last podium spot (+2:18.38)

Toyota Mixed

 Ibon Zugasti and his teammate Alice Pirard (Orbea Factory) secured their place in Absa Cape Epic history when they not only won the prestigious last stage at Val de Vie in 4:08.37 but were also crowned winners in the Toyota Mixed category. 

Riaan Weideman and Samantha Sanders (Toyota Gazoo Racing) were second and Bikehigh’s Jasper Lefevre and Ariadna Rodenas Pascual rounded off the stage podium. 

Overall Zugasti and Pirard finished in 34:35.07. Former leaders in this year’s Toyota Mixed cateogyr race, Weideman and Sanders were second (+40.34). Lefevre and Pascual climbed onto the third step of the podium (+1:52.54).

“The Absa Cape Epic is an amazing race. There are no other words to describe this event. It was an unforgettable experience to not only be part of it, but to ride with Iban,” said Pirard.

Zugasti added: “It was so special to race again in the Absa Cape Epic, because I had a big crash in January and wasn’t sure I would be able to make it this year. I am so happy!”


Absa African Jersey 

Philip Buys won his fifth Absa African Jersey, this time along with his new Namibian teammate Alexander Milner (PYGA Euro Steel); they were also the first African men’s team over the finish-line at Val de Vie in a time of 3:12.13. 

“It is a nice prize after a tough week. We would have loved to win a stage, but the racing for the overall GC positions was so intense that there wasn’t an opportunity to go for a stage win. This week was great for mountain biking and sport in general,” said Buys.

Milner added: “It was my first Absa Epic so to win a jersey is just awesome. It’s a crazy race this!”

Overall Buys and Milner took 27: 34: 04 to complete the Absa  Cape Epic. Behind them, in second, were Joubert and Du Toit (Imbuko {Type} DEV), who won the jersey last year. Arno du Toit and Keagan Bontekoning (Insect Science Pro) were third.

In the Absa African Women’s jersey competition Mauritian Kim Le Court and Vera Looser from Namibia were the first African team over the finish-line in a time of 4:03.08. South Africans Candice Lill and Amy Wakefield ( | SeattleCoffee Co) were second; third on the day was the South African combination of Tiffany Keep and Hayley Preen (Valley Electrical).

This was also the standings for the overall results. Le Court and Looser’s time for the eight days was 33:11.37. Lill and Wakefield (+32.24) and Keep and Preen (+3:32.17) second and third respectively.

It’s a first win in this category for both Le Court and Looser and a great prize to add to their Women's category win.

Exxaro Jersey

William Sello Majapholo and Obvious Khorommbi (Exxaro/RMB) won the final stage in 4:00.57 followed by Zola Ngxakeni and Ntlantla Nonkasa (Toyota-Specialized-NinetyOne 3); third place on the day went to Gilbert Mathaba and Molokela Modiba (Exxaro/Tamela).

After dominating on most of the previous days, Ngxakeni and Nonkasa won the Exxaro Special jersey race in a time of 33:33.04. Joining them on the podium Majapholo and Khorommbi in second spot and in third place were Masixole Zondani and Kabelo Alphues Maduna (Exxaro/GIANT). 

The winners of the Exxaro Women’s Jerseys are Refilwe Mogorosi and Omphile Mataung (Exxaro Academy Ladies).

The winners of the Exxaro jerseys now have the choice between bursaries from Curro Holdings or access to higher education programmes from Stadio - lifechanging prizes to say the least.