Absa Cape Epic: Annika Langvad and Bart Brentjens celebrate their fifth overall victory

The two Specialized riders, Annika Langvad and Anna van der Breggen, also win the gold medal in the overall standings after the last two stages victories. In the category Grand Masters all stage wins go to Bart Brentjens and Abraoo Azevedo. Alan Hatherly and Matthew Beers finish in the top five.

(c) Michal červený

The eight days of racing in the heat of South Africa are in the books. The Absa Cape Epic lived up to its reputation also in 2019 – Ups and Downs, not only in the height profiles of the stages. The MAGURA riders also had to nibble on the challenging competition. On the last kilometers there was also the one or another surprise.

Gallery (c) Michal červený

Ladies duo back with usual strength

Gallery (c) Michal červený

After Annika and Anna has been beaten in the fifth stage, they were well recovered for the last few kilometers of the competition. In the sixth stage, they pulled away from their opponents soon and already tore a gap at the first mountain. They took their lead to the finish and had their fifth stage win. At the grand finale from Stellenbosch to Val de Vie en Paarl, the Danish-Dutch duo were victorious again. After 30km they had extended their lead to 1:46 minutes, but then lost the gap and pedaled along with their competitors to the last kilometer. Then they attacked, could get away and finished on the first place with a 17 second lead finally. So they won the 14th edition of the Absa Cape Epic. For Annika it was the fifth overall victory in her career, for Anna the first.

Bart Brentjens and Abraoo Azevedo also won the gold medal superiorly. The two Grand Masters completed their march in the last two days of the race –  the duo won seven of seven stages plus prologue. Signs of tiredness – no indication. They were compeletly unimpressed from their opponents and pedaled in their pace over the track.

Blums / Fini surprisingly in third place

In the last stage Sebastian Fini and Martin Blums were able to mobilize all their strength again. With only 54 seconds behind the winners, they finished on third position. With that, they finished the Absa Cape Epic with their best result and finished 15th in the overall standings.

Alan Hatherly and Matthew Beers could deliver a constant performance over the entire competition. Also in the last stages, they finished in the top ten. This was rewarded with the fifth place in the overall standings. Alan participated at the Absa Cape Epic for the first time. Therefore the result is very promising and it´s going to be exciting to see what the reigning U23 World Champion will show in this season.

Gallery (c) Michal červený

The first endurance test of the season is done and now the athletes prepare for their next races. The UCI Mountain Bike World Cup starts with the first downhill race in Maribor (SVN) in just one month.Here Loic Bruni and Ko go to the start.For many participants of the Absa Cape Epic the World Cup season in Cross-Country starts  in the middle of May in Albstadt (GER).The season opener was marked by ups and downs for the MAGURA riders and we’ll see if the injuries are fully recovered and healed until the next upcoming races.

Further results of our athletes:

 


Absa Cape Epic: Queen’s Stage takes its toll

The second half of the stage race in South Africa has already been rung in. In the first half, Annika Langvad and her team partner Anna van der Breggen, as well as Bart Brentjens and Abraoo Azevedo, were consistently on course to the gold medal. In the strong men field, already a few favorites dropped out.  After the fifth stage, the competition called for more victims.

It’s the toughest stage race in the world, putting our athletes and teams to a hard test test, already at the start of the season. The fourth stage, a time trial, was different from the other stages. The two teams were sent to the track alone and rush against the time. Then, tired legs and lacks of concentration showed up at the fifth stage.

Plan changes and driving errors

The plan of Annika Langvad and Anna van der Breggen was actually to calm down the time trial. But it’s difficult, , not to ride, alone on the track, the 43km at full throttle. The plan was quickly rejected. “… you ride somewhat “blind”. And turning the intensity up for two hours on a shorter stage can be mentally challenging after four days of racing. But that’s a big part of the game. The mental challenge of ignoring the fatigue in your legs and keep on pushing is crucial in these stage races., “writes the reigning marathon world champion on Facebook. And the duo did that as well and took the stage victory with one minute in front.

Gallery (c) Michal červený

The women´s duo missed the sixth stage win in a row. At the queen stage of Oak Valley Estate to Stellenbosch, Anna crashed with a her front wheel was defect, and so the two ladies got beaten. Still, they could defend the orange jersey, but their distance in the overall standings slimed to 22 seconds.

However, our Grand Masters, Bart Brentjens and Abraoo Azevedo are unimpressed. 6/6 and 1:13 minutes ahead in the overall standings!

Käß / Geismayer and Rohrbach / Looser have to give up

In the men category, the chaff separates from the wheat slowly. In the gentlemen, the wheat is separated from the chaff so slowly. It’s pitted and the falls and defects are piling up. Two of our MAGURA riders also been affected.

Nicola Rohrbach and Konny Looser had to handle problems over the entire  race. Good results were missing. Finally, they announced the demolition of the contest this morning. Konny was struggling with health problems. After a doctor’s recommendation, the duo retires and did not start at the fifth stage.

Also the Cape Epic-experienced athletes, Daniel Geismayr and Jochen Käß,  did not pass the races without a trace. They had worked their way up from stage to stage. Now  the early end came. Jochen injured in a fall in the fifth stage and could not continue the race. Thus, they can not defend their fifth place in the overall standings.

Gallery (c) Michal červený

So now, the best MAGURA team is Alan Hatherly and Matthew Beers. This mating also crashed, but so far they have been able to call a constant performance – they finished in 8th place on the fourth stage. The only exception was the fifth stage, where they finished on 13th,but after Jochen and Daniel dropped out of the competition they are now in fifth place in the overall standings.

 


Absa Cape Epic: Annika Langvad and Anna van der Breggen undefeatet

Four days ago the toughest stage race in South Africa started. The Absa Cape Epic is considered the “Tour de France of mountain biking”. After three stages plus prologue, Annika Langvad and her teammate Anna van der Breggen clearly dominate the women’s field. At the men´s field, however, the front positions are heavily fought over and there is still no clear favorite.

The Specialized-duo in the women category fits perfectly into their role as a favorite. Annika and Anna won masterfully all stages and so they are in the lead overall, with 24 seconds ahead .

(c) Schoeman

The prologue already showed their dominance. After just six, out of a total of 20 kilometers to go, they had already gain over one minute to their rivals.

Also at the first stage of 111km with start and finish in Hermanus, the duo could settle early and rolled, with a total of 3:07 minutes before their pursuers, across the finish line.

(c) Cerveny

On the third day, the top favorites completed their hattrick. However, over the 90km, the fatigue was noticeable. Especially for the street world champion, Anna, the long stages represent a special challenge. Also in the technical passages she was not sure before, if she could keep up with her experienced teammate.

The third stage also had no surprises to offer for our two riders. They pedaled along the track at their pace, literally shaking off their pursuers. This allowed them to further expand their overall leadership.

Although it seems like the overall standing in the women category is as good as decided, but in the upcoming four days with a total of 302 kilometers to ride, everything is still possible and can happen.

Sam Gaze has to give up because of serious injury

At the men´s category, things started to get turbulent from day one. As well with our athletes.

(c) Cerveny

After a successful start into the competition, the tide turned for Jaroslav Kulhavy and Sam Gaze. At the longest stage, the Kiwi crashed. In a post on Instagram, he summarizes the stage and the fall: “Long story short, lost time early on, crash my brains out which lost me some time and left me nursing a sore body, lost more time again and then a dropped chain to polish off an eventful day. ” Yet they became sixth. But the fall should have consequences. The second stage, the Specialized rider suffered with severe pain. At this point, he did not want to give up yet. “I’ve taken a big knock, and it takes time to recover but I’m not willing to give up on a team and team mate who are supporting me so well. For sure the overall is gone, but we aren’t leaving the Epic without a fight, “he writes after the finish on rank 37. But then, the journey ended. “Yesterday afternoon my condition got worse, following with issues this morning,” he wrote. A concussion was diagnosed.

His teammate Jaroslav can not defend his overall victory, but he continued as support for the team Specialized Foundation NAD with Alan Hatherly and Matthew Beers.

(c) Cerveny

Alan and Matthew competed as absolute outsiders. Although far from the yellow jersey, the team still puts a lot of pressure on the top. In the prologue, the team was stopped by a rear wheel defect of Matthew, which cost them a few seconds. Nevertheless, they reached the fifth place. Since then, they are confidently in the top ten (# 1 place 9, # 2 place 7, # 3 place 7). This puts them in seventh place in the overall standings.

What lasts long is getting better and better

The two riders of the team Centurion Vaude, Daniel Geismayr and Jochen Käß, are two old hands in terms of stage races. For several years they already participate in the Absa Cape Epic. After four years, however, they find themselves together again as team partners. And that, with success. Starting in tenth place at the prologue, they finally work their way up to fifth place in the third stage. The many endurance races have taught them to divide their power well. We are curious if they climb the ladder further up.

Also Bart Brentjens is brimming with experience at the Absa Caoe Epic. The Dutchman has not missed an epic year and has recorded four overall victories so far. The signs are good that he can add another to his collection this year. The fifty-year-old, together with his colleague Abraoo Azevedo, has won every single stage victory in the Grand Masters category so far, and with a 37-second lead in the overall standings, the pair are already quite close to the gold medal.

Further results of our athletes:

#racingisyellow

 

 


Cape Epic: Bike Check – that’s what the pros are counting on

The Absa Cape Epic presents the absolute superlative of mountain biking every year. Not only the pros meet for the first big showdown of the season, also for the bike manufacturers, the well-known stage race means a first endurance test. Athletes, as well as material, are exposed to extreme situations in hot and dry conditions. Take a look at the racing machines of our MAGURA riders!

Gallery (c) Michal červený

Specialized Racing Team: from zebra to giraffe

Jaroslav Kulahvy´s S-Works
Jaroslav Kulahvy´s S-Works – Picture (c) Michal červený

The pros of the Specialized Racing Team stand out! Not only by their performance and their sovereign appearance, they attract attention, even through their wild bikes they stand out of the crowd. The Absa Cape Epic is perfect for the premiere.

Jaroslav Kulhavy´s racing machine – Gallery (c) Michal červený

The heart of the bike is the Specialized S-Works Epic frame. With built-in brain technology, the complete suspension elements are linked and automatically intelligently regulated. It achieves maximum sensitivity of the sports equipment, allowing Annika Langvad, Jaroslav Kulhavy, Sam Gaze and Co to achieve maximum pedaling efficiency. On top of that there is a special design for Annika and Jaroslav; last year, with black and white crosswalks, this year, the bikes are decorated with abstractly colored giraffe patches.

Annika Langvad´s racing machine – Gallery (c) Michal červený

While Annika uses a dropper seatpost, the other pros grab the regular stiff seatposts. The drive is equipped with powermeters and allows the professionals to achieve optimal performance monitoring.

Anna van der Breggen´s racing machine – Gallery (c) Michal červený

Another eye-catcher: the MAGURA MT8 Raceline in bright neon yellow. Since 2017, the team relies on our brakes, which can be customized both visually and functionally through special customization options. With our unique Carbotecture material, we can offer our riders minimal weight and maximum stability. Equipped with two pistons, we grant maximum safety on the track.

Christoph Sauser´s racing machine – Gallery (c) Michal červený

The choice of tires is usually adjusted once more to the weather and route conditions during the course of the race. The tubeless system saves weight.

Simon Andreassen´s racing machine – Gallery (c) Michal červený

CST Sandd Bafang: Winged with the American Eagle

“Born to Bike” is the motto of Bart Brentjens and his own brand “American Eagle”. Already at the first Olympic Games in mountain bike in 1996, Bart won on an American Eagle, in 2016 he breathed life into the brand together with Henk Schipper again. Together with his team CST Sandd Bafang he brings a new version on time to the Absa Cape Epic.

Compared to some of the competitors, the Dutch rely on a discreet but stylish design. Only a few orange applications put the bicycle builder on a black background. The reason for this; Weight reduction. A coat of paint weighs about 200 grams. That could be a few grams too much in the fight for the medals. The bike gets its good riding characteristics through the components. “Ultralight” is always the motto – from the suspension on the wheels to the brake.

Another advantage on the trails: the lowerable seat post. The tracks at the Absa Cape Epic are very varied. Sections over tar, dusty sand and technical trails require good driving skills of the athletes. A lowerable seat post additionally offers a situation-specific individual adjustment of the bike.

And even with the brakes, the mountain bike pros agree. With our MT8 Raceline they feel ready for the eight days of racing. Once Bart Brentjens won the Olympic Games with our HS33, today he starts with the successor.

The team owes their main sponsor also the grip on the tracks. Despite being tubeless, the tires guarantee puncture protection and safety in technical areas. At the same time they have a rather flat profile with ramp-shaped buttons, which provides speed on the tar and gravel passages.

Centurion Vaude: continuation of a long-standing partnership

In a new cast, the riders of the Centurion Vaude team attack at the Absa Cape Epic. We are happy to be on board with the team. The sponsoring agreement ended in 2013 but we were able to continue this together in 2019.

What remains the same, is the namesake Centurion, whose frame the team has been driving for several years. The bike is designed for the discipline XC Marathon and thus for off-road use. Perfect for the hard days in South Africa.

The suspension of the bike should reduce the impact of bumps on the rider. With that, Jochen Käß, Daniel Geismayr and Co can save a lot of power. In addition, a quick wheel change in breakdowns should be possible by a special quick-release system, despite a plug axis.

The bike of the Team Centurion Vaude gets a special touch with golden applications on the gear and crank.

Cape Epic 2019 – MT8 Raceline von Jochen Käß

Das Cape Epic Bremsensetup von Team Centurion Vaude Athlet Jochen Käß – #racingisyellowHeute startet die erste Etappe des wohl härtesten MTB Etappenrennens der Welt. Jochen zeigt euch, worauf es bei seiner Bremsenwahl ankommt!

Geplaatst door MAGURA op Zondag 17 maart 2019

 

The special touch gives our MT8 Raceline. “I’m glad to be able to drive the MAGURA MT8 brake again this year, as we just have not any problems with this brake in the last few years and that’s just the A and O of stage racing. To reach the finish safely, without any defects, ” praises rider Jochen Käß.

The team also uses all-rounders and specialists for XC tracks for the tires. The profile ensures good traction and acceleration.

 

 


Absa Cape Epic: Presentation of our riders

The toughest stage race in the world starts on Sunday. The “Tour de France of Mountainbiking” enters the 14th lap. Once a year, the world elite of mountainbiking meets up ub South Africa for the first showdown of the season. The MAGURA-participants are defending champions and former medalists and it´s going to be exciting who will win the title this year!

Picture (c) ​Michal červený

The athletes ride in teams, consisting of two riders. The background to this is, that many stages lead through remote areas of Africa and so the drivers can help each other. This ensures more safety on the route. That implied, that the should never be more than two minutes apart, otherwise a time penalty of one hour will be imposed. This is an additional challenge for our riders and the pairings must be chosen well.

Defending champion with new constellation

With Jaroslav Kulhavy, the Specialized Racing Team sends another defending champion into the race. This year, the Czech is a guest rider for the team, because he is traveling under his own flag since this year. Last year, he was the fastest together with Howard Grotts. This year Howard had to cancel due to health reasons, replaced by Sam Gaze. Sam applies as an exceptional talent in mountain biking, but had to struggle with injuries in the past season. We will see if the duo can start successfully into their season.

Gallery (c) Michal červený

Old hands and motivated rookies

Another pairing are the two South Africans Alan Hatherly and Matthew Beers. The two riders of the Specialized Racing Team belong ratherly to the underdogs. But as reigning U23 World Champion, paired with an experienced marathoner, the duo can provide a surprise.

Another duo with the white S on red background will be Christoph Sauser and Simon Andreassen. The five-time winner Christoph is one of the most experienced participants. Absolute rookie, however, is the 21-year-old Simon. He is a great talent on the bike and has already won several championships in cross-country, but stage races are completely new territory for him.

The Absa Cape Epic and bikelegend Bart Brentjens  belong together somehow. The Olympic champion of 1996 did not miss any epic year. Of his thirteen participations, he won four times in the Masters class. This year he starts together with the Brazilian Abraao Azevedo – a pairing that has worked very well in the last few years.

Now the Dutchman leads the youngster of his team CST Sandd Bafang up to the competition. The Nordic combination of the Dane Sebastian Fini and the Latvian Martins Blums, let hope for a lot and the two will heat up the experienced professionals quite nicely. Their teammate David Nordemann starts together with guest rider Erwin Bakker.

German teams and other medal candidates

Also the Team Centurion Vaude is in the starting blocks. Jpchen Käß and the Austrian Daniel Geismayr get together this year. At last, the two rode together in 2015 at the Absa Cape Epic. We will see if the two can quickly warm up and build on their past successes. They already had the yellow jersey over several stages, but the overall victory is still missing in their collection.

For several weeks, they acclimate on the black continent and guide their new team mate, Vinzent Dorn over the tracks. With only 20 years, the guy from the Black Forest dare into compeletly foreign waters. Grown up in cross-country mountainbiking, he descovered his talent in marathon. He contests the competition together with the Namibian Tristan de Lange.

Former guest rider of Centurion Vaude is Nicola Rohrbach. This year, he set up a duo together with his Confederate Konny Looser. Also new; his Silverback racing machine, which will accompany him over the race. The Swiss has always ranked among the top five in the past three years. This is making him to one of the top medal candidates.

 

Join us when the MAGURA riders start the first stage on next Sunday, March 17th! The race can be followed live on the homepage of Absa Cape Epic. Keep your fingers crossed!


MAGURA starts into a new race season

The die is cast, once again the driver’s carousel stops  and the first MT7 Raceline and MT8 Raceline brakes are sent. In the bike sector both, familiar and new faces, will present our comprehensive brake repertoire on the tracks worldwide. Which teams and riders that will be, check it out briefly in this story!

Titelbild (c) Michal červený

Specialized Racing goes on with MAGURA

Last year, the Specialized Racing Team celebrated three World Championship titles under the flag of MAGURA. Already several years ago, we bacame the new brake outfitter of the Specialized Racing Team (Cross-Country), in 2018 the Specialized Gravity and Enduro Team followed. All Riders rely on our two flagships MT7 and MT8 Raceline with HC levers, where we also respond to special requests. the cooperation eith all three teams offered not only MAGURA, but also the athletes completly new possibilities. Read more about that in our story “Tailor-made brakes for Loic Bruni”.

Bild (c) Michal červený

But even after a successful race season, changes in the team structure didn´t stay out. After years of collaboration, reigning cross-country world champion Kate Courtney and mountain bike legend Jaroslav Kulhavy bid farewell. In their place come the street world champion Anna van der Breggen, and the U23 world cross country champion Alan Hatherly. Miranda Miller is leaving the Specialized Gravity Team, which is narrowing down to reigning downhill world champion Loic Bruni and Young Gun Finn Iles. Curtis Keene and Jared Graves retire completely from the Enduro World Series and so leave the Specialized Enduro Team. In 2019, Killian Callaghan, Maxime Chapuis and Francescu-Maria Camoin, three almost unknown riders, will start with the neon yellow brakes.

 

Gallery (c) Michal červený/Sebastian Schieck

While the rider-wheel nearly overruns teams and athletes, it has missed Brett Tippie the last few years. Since 2016, the forefather of freeride relies on our brake repertoire. In addition to his countless successes as an MTB professional, the Canadian has become an important brand ambassador of the MAGURA brand. And matching the bright yellow MAGURA emblem, he is titled the “Director of Good Times”. As a man, full of sparkles,  he guarantees everywhere, always happy mood!

Ride on with Drop’n’Roll and new family member

We welcome a new member of the MAGURA family! The Pole Kamil Kobędzowski raises trial driving to a whole new level. He describes himself as a stunt rider and these are also the first associations that come to mind when you take a closer look at his art. His movements are comparable to art cycling, similar graceful – just a bit rougher and especially on the trial bike. He shows acrobatics, that we usually know from our MAGURA Powersports riders.

With Danny MacAskill’s Drop’n’Roll Tour we go into the fourth round. In their daring tricks on the trial bike, the guys must be able to rely uncompromisingly on the braking performance. Since 2015, Danny, Fabio, Ali and Duncan trust the MAGURA MT7 Raceline. No matter where they occur, they inspire!

Initiator of the tour was bike-legend Danny MacAskill. The Scot is one of the best mountain bike riders in the world and constantly comes up with new tricks. He transforms a city into a playground for mountain bikers. Also Drop’n’Roll member Fabio Wibmer is always looking for new challenges. The Austrian is one of the most talented all-rounders on the bike. Whether with highspeed in the snow or by wheelie through his home Innsbruck. With over 2 million subscribers, he is also a real YouTube star. Together with his roommate and buddy, Elias Schwärzler, they developed the brand “Sick Series” out of their own Youtube series. Since 2016, Fabio has been one of the MAGURA riders, followed by Elias one year later.

A welcome guest in her Youtube series is Tom Oehler. The Red Bull-rider and trial world champion belongs to the absolute extra class in the bike sector. Incidentally, the Austrian even set two world records – “highest wall climb on a bicycle” (2009) and “fastest 400m hurdles on a bicycle” (2013).

Another cycling talent, that lost his heart to the Tyrolean Innsbruck, is Harald Philipp. As he writes himself, he is only “accidentally born in the middle of Germany”. His home are the mountains, that the extreme athlete explores almost exclusively on the bike. Nothing is impossible for him!

MAGURA Globetrotter biking around the world

Together with Max Schumann, Harald and Tom form a triad, that likes to explore new paths in every country. Max likes to talk about his adventures in magazines like online on “mtb-News“, Harald packs his experiences in live lectures. Until the end of May he is still on tour with his program “Pfadfinder” in Germany and Austria.

In this male domain, it is not easy to enforce. But Dorothee Fleck reached that and is not only an adventurer, but also a book author. For her, the bike is, next to leisure and sports equipment, a medium of transportation beyond national borders. Since 2015 she explores the black continent. Alone as a woman in Africa – she is not worried about that. Several trips around the world experienced her.

Concentrated Girls Power is also available with the twins Caro and Anita Gehrig. The two Swiss have been riding at the Enduro World Series for several years. They love exploring new places and be on track of mysteries. Her last project: Free Riding Iran.

Racers hunting for medals

Also the cross-country rider, Elisabeth Brandau, shows what our girls are capable of. At least in 2018, the mother of two children proved again that she is currently the fastest in the German national team of the category elite women. She is the reigning German champion in cross-country and in cyclo-cross. This year, bright-yellow will be added to her colors orange-black.

Just like the cross-country riders, the MAGURA Marathon teams are still preparing the race season. But there is not much time left. Already next week, the Absa Cape Epic begins through the desert of South Africa. Amongst others, our two teams Texpa-Simplon and Centurion Vaude will face the toughest stage race in the world. Again, there was a new transfer. Markus Kaufmann will be seen in the colors of Texpa this year. This turns teammates into tough rivals. In his former team, Jochen Käß and Daniel Geismayr are already lurking to duel with him. One thing is certain: in terms of braking, there is a tie for all three!

Check out all our MAGURA “Teams and Riders” on our homepage!