“When the wind blows here nothing can resist it.” – A line remembered from an 80’s Asterix movie.
Howling winds and torrential rain wreaked havoc in the FNB Wines2Whales Pinotage race village overnight. At 11pm the call was made to evacuate the tented camp and an exodus of riders were bussed to schools and halls throughout Elgin. But come Tuesday morning the inextinguishable Wines2Whales gees came roaring back to life.
Tents were re-pitched. Trails were cleared of fallen branches and trees. And by 11am the show was ready to go on. The hard work of people too many to name was exceptional and hopefully the weather will play along on Saturday night, allowing them to get the good night’s rest they deserve.
Starting in the rain and with wet trails and roads on the cards there was no doubt it would be a muddy, dirty, slippery and therefor entertaining ride. As long as you kept moving and warm it was a day to remember. Almost certainly more so because of the night before than the day itself but none-the-less Stage 2 of the 2018 Pinotage event will live long and large in the FNB Wines2Whales history books.
The farm roads on a slope of any kind were filled with rivulets running downhill, while the flat sections were pot-marked by puddles. The earlier batches started in the rain so staying dry and avoiding splashing water up and onto oneself wasn’t a worthy priority. Instead many riders revelled in the muddy conditions, slipping their way through the trails and happily trying to splash their teammate at every opportunity.
Hard packed base layers covered by slick clay surfaces in places made for dirty kit and the odd fall, but with sliding out rather than crashing down most made for sources of hilarity rather than concern. Riding in the mud is after-all far more fun.