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Blog: Hill lives in luxury at Zuurberg race

Blog: Hill lives in luxury at Zuurberg race

PwC Great Zuurberg Trek defending champion, Andrew Hill of TIB Insurance-Momsen Bikes, shares his experiences of staying in the Addo Elephant National Park on the Platinum package, as well as his views on the challenging queen stage on day two of this year’s event.

One of the many perks of staying in the Addo Elephant National Park on the Platinum package of the PwC Great Zuurberg Trek is the camaraderie between riders.

There aren’t many races where I get the time to enjoy the social interaction and get to swop daily war stories with the other participants.

Last night we had the full bush experience, laid on by the PwC crew and Mountain Events in the bush boma. The camp fire stories of the day on the bike were fuelled by the Leopards Leap red wine and, spurred on by the live music, made for a very festive atmosphere.

In my opinion, mountain bikers are special bunch of humans and, no matter the level of expertise or physical aptitude, we all enjoy some time outdoors. So the prospect of being able to head out for an evening game drive before dinner really appealed to most of the guys staying in the camp.

We took full advantage of this opportunity and were lucky enough to watch a breeding herd of Elephants taking an evening sip from the waterhole, just two min from our cabin. It was tough day in Africa.

After a relaxing evening we awoke to another early African sun whose rays set the tone for the tough day that awaited us.

The queen stage of the event was always going to be brutal for the majority of the teams, and this was where the gaps would open up over the 2000m of climbing in 78km.

Our tactic was to be up front in the group and make sure we were around for the moves that might occur.

Like all plans there is always some level of guesswork and, unfortunately, we experienced some mechanical trouble with my trusty racing machine.

This placed a fair amount of drag on my back wheel and I couldn’t understand why the climbs and freewheeling felt particularly laboured.

We had to push through and only lost a small amount of time considering the issue.

Tomorrow is the play day and I’m sure we’ll have a great time out there for a short fast paced burn.

CAPTION: Andrew Hill (right) of TIB Insurance-Momsen Bikes is enjoying the social interaction and swopping daily war stories with the other participants of the PwC Great Zuurberg Trek.

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