Wednesday, 28 September 2016

Durban Dash Up 2016 - Off You Go

The race registration venue for the race consists of a table or two on the veranda of The Station Masters Arms in Hillcrest. With Dawn Bell unable to ride due to illness the field was whittled down to just eight competitors. 

Most people were either unsure or cagey about their race strategy. I had at least announced that I was planning on riding nonstop and that I wanted to finish before sunset on Saturday, 37 hours, with my audacious goal being to crack 34 hours. Having opted for my mountain bike, instead of my road steed, 34 hours was going to be tough. 

Race briefing lasted a few minutes. It consisted of Andy Masters handing out race numbers and engaging in some two way prattle with John Loos. To be fair, Andy did say something useful. He told us there was no accommodation available at The Border Post and that the kitchen there closed at 8pm. I knew I wouldn't be there by 8pm and didn't intend stopping so the only 'useful' information he gave us was of no import to me. Race numbers in hand we wandered off. 

With race numbers cable tied to our bikes we trickled back just after 4:30 am the following morning for the 5 am start. Bikes were unloaded from cars, helmets were fitted and lights checked. We wandered around blinding each other with our headlights while Andy did his best to line us up for a start line photograph. He must have managed because after a while he stepped back and announced, "Off you go!" And so we did just that. 

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