All systems go for the 2021 Absa Cape Epic, October 17-24

Absa Cape Epic Press Release

‘(Stage 2 of the 2019 Absa Cape Epic Mountain Bike stage race from Hermanus High School in Hermanus to Oak Valley Estate in Elgin, South Africa on the 19th March 2019.  Photo by Sam Clark/Cape Epic)

With exactly one month to go to what will undoubtedly be a truly unique Absa Cape Epic experience in October (36 months since the 2019 Absa Cape Epic concluded), it is all systems go for event staff and the 300 teams who are racing the 2021 event.


The organizers of The Race That Measures All have remained committed to doing everything possible to ensure the 2021 Absa Cape Epic takes places safely and successfully from 17-24 October and that riders, both local and international, are offered the very best mountain bike experience. Several necessary changes will be introduced to ensure compliance with government regulations and best practices, including the additional guidelines outlined by CyclingSA and the Department of Sport, Arts and Culture for the safe return of sanctioned mass participation cycling events.


Most notably, the event will not have spectators and access to race villages, water points and other official areas will be strictly controlled. All participants and event staff must present a negative Covid-19 test before the start of the race and submit to a further antigen test during the event as an added screening measure. Whilst not a prerequisite to participate in the Absa Cape Epic, we do encourage all participants to be vaccinated. Further Covid-19 mitigation plans are in place and will be enforced.



Said Karen Clements, Absa Cape Epic Race Director: “The past 20 months have been incredibly challenging for so many, including the events industry, small businesses and communities that benefit from the vast economic activity generated by events each year. We are truly grateful for the collaboration with, Cycling South Africa, our independent Medical Advisory Group and the Department of Sport, Arts and Culture as well as our colleagues at Cape Town Cycle Tour, Ride Joburg and Cape Town Marathon to develop and pave the way for the safe return of more mass participation events in South Africa.”


Fans and supporters of the race can expect a full daily Live Broadcast that will be available on the Absa Cape Epic Facebook page and YouTube channel, as well as on SuperSport. In addition to the Live Broadcast, there will be daily highlight shows and blow by blow action on social media throughout the eight days of the event.



The Absa Cape Epic is the world’s premier mountain bike stage race. The route changes every year, leading aspiring amateur and professional mountain bikers from around the world through roughly 700km of unspoilt scenery and 15 000m of accumulated climbing, over some of the most magnificent mountain passes in Western Cape in South Africa.  The Absa Cape Epic is the most televised mountain bike stage race in the world and the only eight-day mountain bike stage race classed as hors catégorie by the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI). This official UCI status makes it a highlight on the professional racer’s calendar. The Absa Cape Epic also attracts aspiring amateur riders wanting to test themselves against the best. It is a full-service race, meaning that everything is taken care of from the start – all riders need to think about is riding.

In 2016 the Cape Epic PTY (ltd) was acquired by the IRONMAN group and is now the pinnacle event of the Epic Series which includes the Swiss Epic in Switzerland and The Pioneer, fuelled by Nutri-Grain in New Zealand.  


About The IRONMAN Group

The IRONMAN Group operates a global portfolio of events that includes the IRONMAN® Triathlon Series, the IRONMAN® 70.3® Triathlon Series, the IRONMAN® Virtual Racing™ (VR™) Series, 5150™ Triathlon Series, the Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon Series®, the Rock ‘n’ Roll Virtual Running™ Series, IRONKIDS®, ITU World Triathlon Series, premier running events including the Standard Chartered Singapore Marathon™ and The Sun-Herald City2Surf® presented by Westpac, Ultra-Trail® World Tour events including Tarawera Ultra and Ultra-Trail Australia™, mountain bike races including the Absa Cape Epic®, road cycling events, and other multisport races. The IRONMAN Group is the largest operator of mass participation sports in the world and provides more than a million participants annually the benefits of endurance sports through the company’s vast offerings. Since the inception of the iconic IRONMAN® brand and its first event in 1978, athletes have proven that ANYTHING IS POSSIBLE® by crossing finish lines around the world. Beginning as a single race, The IRONMAN Group has grown to become a global sensation with hundreds of events across 55+ countries. The IRONMAN Group is owned by Advance, a private, family-owned business. For more information, visit

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