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Hi there


With just over a week to go until the 2021 Investec Great Kei Trek, I’m sure you are getting as excited as we already are.


Most of my team left this morning and will be based in Morgan Bay until the 10th of May. The rest of us leave on Monday, so if you don’t get an immediate response to an email you send us after that, please don’t take it personally. We aren’t ignoring you. We are just out on trails and more.


You would have already received a Tips & Instructions mailer from us, and this can be found on the home page of www.greatkeitrek.co.za


Please do read that and do read this as well.


There are some really important things to take note of, especially with all the logistics involved, so please do read everything carefully.


REGISTRATION AND BIKE TRANSPORT

We are doing our best to take the hassle out of the behind the scenes “Bike Admin” for you, so please read carefully.


Gauteng Riders: The idea is that you come to registration in Joburg, pick up your Rider Box (RB) and then take your box home, pack it and then return it to us the following day so we can transport it to Morgan Bay for you. All for “Mahala” – compliments of SG Convenience.

NOTE HERE: Our suggestion is that if you are staying in a hotel, don’t use the rider box option, but rather bring us your packed suitcase, or alternatively, fly down with your case. Carrying a huge Rider Box up a flight of stairs can be a bit cumbersome.

If you are staying in a tent, a Rider Box makes sense.


If you have booked and paid to have your bike transported, you will be able to drop this off at registration. We will pack it in a special bike box for you.


You will be able to register on the following days: 

Thursday the 22nd of April from 12.30 to 17.00

Friday the 23rd of April from 12.30 to 15.00


This will take place at Adega in Rivonia. It’s close to the freeway, so access should be fairly easy.


The address is: Rivonia Crossing 2, 3 Achter Road corner Witkoppen Road, Rivonia (Situated in the same complex as The Barnyard Theatre)


SPECIAL NOTE: We have had a number of requests from riders asking to drop off their bikes earlier and on different days. We simply are not geared to assist other than in the times specified, so unfortunately we can’t help you. If you can’t drop off your bike, please get someone else to do it for you.


You will be asked to fill in and sign an indemnity form as well.


BIKE COLLECTION - POST RACE

Bikes can be collected at Adega Restaurant on Tuesday the 4th of May from 10.00 - 17.30. At the same place you dropped them off


GOODIE BAG AND RACE NUMBER COLLECTION

This will take place at the Morgan Bay Hotel from 12.30 to 16.00 on Thursday the 29th of April.

Please Note: A comprehensive rider briefing will then take place at 16.00 at the hotel.

You need to ensure that you have booked your flights to make sure you get there in time to attend this. Please note that the drive time from East London Airport to Morgan Bay is approximately 1½ hours.

WELCOME BRAAI AFTER RIDER BRIEFING

Have you booked yet? This is automatically included in your package if you are staying at one of the hotels or in the campsite as part of the race village.

All Economy Package riders need to ensure that they book for the braai timeously.

Should you want to stay for a bit of fun after the briefing, you can book your spot at the braai, or book your bus ride by mailing Monique on greatkeitrek@icon.co.za. 

Please can you do this by no later than Friday the 23rd of April.


The cost is R250 for the braai.



AIRPORT SHUTTLES

We are offeringbus shuttles for a small fee, courtesy of Luxliner Coaches, from East London Airport to Morgan Bay.

Again, this is included in your package if you are staying in a hotel or in the campsite.

Plus we will havebus shuttles from Morgan Bay to East London Airport, again courtesy of Luxliner Coaches, on Sunday the 2nd of May and Monday the 3rdof May. We do strongly advise you to catch the Monday bus as the after party takes place at the Morgan Bay Hotel on Sunday evening.

Bus Shuttle cost is R350 each way or R700 return.

BUS TIMES

Bus Departure Times from East London Airport to Morgan Bay

Thursday the 29th of April: 

Investec Bus – 09.00

Bus 2 – 09.00

Bus 3 – 12.30


Bus Departure Times from the Morgan Bay Hotel to East London Airport

Sunday the 2nd of May: 14.30
Monday the 3rd of May: 07.00 – we will have an extra bus, leaving later in the morning, and the departure time will be communicated to you over the weekend.
Should there be any further bus requirements, please can you consult with us at the event at registration


BAYVIEW FARM - SATURDAY AFTERNOON BASH

On Day 2 (Saturday), we will be cycling through Bayview Farm for Waterpoint 1. The owner, Ken Tucker has offered all riders some great specials for Saturday afternoon including local craft beer less 50%, pizza specials and live music. I can highly recommend a visit here. We will be offering a bus service on Saturday form 14.00 to 17.30 for all who are keen on a bit of off the bike fun. Buses will leave from the hotel.


TENTED ACCOMMODATION

Each team of 2 riders will be allocated a tent with two stretchers and 2 camp chairs.


TECH SUPPORT

We will have technical support and you will be able to book a maintenance package that includes a service at registration.

You will also be able to book your bike in for any technical issues during the three days.


SPECIAL NOTE: It’s best to carry their own spare derailleur hangers because they are specific to the bike.


You need to WhatsApp Candy directly on 083-653-1112 to book your bike maintenance package (included for all Investec-sponsored Riders).


THE WEATHER

Weather at this time of the year is showing to be unpredictable. There has been a fair amount of rain and it’s playing havoc with Siya and Roger’s Trails. So do bring a raincoat and some warm clothes, and if you are camping, an extra blanket as it can get cold at night.


ROUTE MARKING

This will be done “Keagan” style, so expect pink stickers, white A4 boards with green arrows and lime marking – biodegradable of course!


CHARGING FACILITIES

This applies to campers. We will have charging facilities, but we do advise you to bring along an additional Powerbank.


START TIMES

Friday will now commence at 07.30

Saturday will commence at 08.00

Sunday will commence at 07.30 to accommodate riders who have planes to catch


BATCH START

On Friday morning, we will start you in batches of 30 riders at 10-minute intervals. 6 batches in total. This will be communicate to you at rider registration.


The reason for batch start is that you will be crossing the Kei River of various ferry’s and they are only allowed to take 30 riders per trip. It’s going to be a tough ask, but please try and stay in your batch from the start to the ferry some 9km away. Once you get into the Old Transkei, you can then put the proverbial “Hammer” down. Investec will be the first batch to start at 07.30.


THE ROUTE

Day 1 – 62km

Day 2 - 52km

Day 3 – 58km

We will brief you about each stage at rider briefing each day. For more information, do visit the website.


RACE TIMING & RACE FINISH POSITIONS

The only timing we will have is the time you give us from your Strava.

We will have CLOCK IN and CLOCK OUT stations on the trail where you are expected to sign in and out so we know you haven’t been abducted by aliens or caught up in a shebeen somewhere.


This year, you can finish in 1 of 3 positions. 1st, 2nd or 3rd. There’s only one person who can finish first and one person who can finish second. I’ll leave the rest up to you to work out what position you could finish in.


CUT OFF TIMES

Whilst we hope that you are fit and healthy, we do not intend cutting off anyone. However, if it means that you are going to be riding in the dark, then we will need to “offer” you a lift home.


WATER TABLES

The longest distance you will travel each day without a water point is 20km. There will be well-stocked points on each stage, and we will brief you on this each day.

More details will be communicated at the various daily rider briefings.


CATERING
All hotel guests and campers have their meals included in their entry.


If you have not yet booked your meals, unfortunately all bookings have closed as we have had to submit our quantities.


The meal and drinks costs at the After Party at the Morgan Bay Deck on Sunday night will be for your own account.


PRIZE GIVING AND AFTER PARTY

This will take place on The Deck at the Morgan Bay Hotel at 18.30 on Sunday the 2nd of May.


SPORTS MASSAGE FACILITIES 

Bookings are essential, and can be done at the hotel reception at a cost of R200 per 30 minutes. Be warned... you need to book early.

(Included for all Investec Riders)

INFUZIO - IV Vitamin Drip offer for Jhb based GKT Riders 

One of our riders is offering a special on Infuzio health and wellness IV Vitamin Drips and hyperbaric oxygen therapy.  Their IV drips  are administered by registered nurses in the comfort of a spa in Fourways or Lanseria.

IV therapy is known for replenishing your body’s level of electrolytes and quickly restoring vitamins and fluids lost during a workout.  They have two outlets, one at the Fourways Life & Day Spa and at the Lanseria Culinary Centre.


Bookings can be made by contacting clare@infuzio.co.za


TICK BITE FEVER ALERT

A few mates were down at Morgan Bay recently and were out helping ride our trails and having a whole bunch of fun. A number of them contracted Tick Bite Fever.

Here are a few tips on how to prevent being bitten or contracting it :

•    When stopping for a rest, try not to sit on the grass

•    Use Tabbard spray or equivalent

•    Shower as soon as possible after finishing your ride

•    Always check:

o    Under the arms

o    In and around the ears

o    Inside belly button

o    Back of the knees

o    In and around the hair

o    Between the legs

o    Around the waist


RULES OF THE ROAD

Please obey all instructions and please remember that if you are riding on a dirt or tar road, you need to obey the rules of the road. We do not have road closure, you DO NOT have right of way.


THE BIKE WASH

After the ride, have your bike washed courtesy of some of the local youngsters, and here we do ask that you tip the bike washers. Please, not more than R20 per bike.


THINGS YOU DON’T KNOW TODAY THAT YOU WILL KNOW ON THE 3rd OF MAY

•    What a “fines” session is exactly

•    Exactly where Seagulls, Trennery’s and Haga Haga are on the map

•    What “Molo” means

•    What “Ngonyama” means

•    Where exactly “Ant’s Rock” is

•    How good Eastern Cape hospitality actually is

•    How good Eastern Cape lamb is

•    How beautiful the cliffs of Morgan Bay actually are

•    For everything we do, a little bit of good comes out of it


And speaking of which…..


GKT OUTREACH PROGRAMME: IXGARA CRECHE & THUADULWAZI MATHS & SCIENCE ACADEMY

We have adopted a local crèche in Morgan Bay, run by the community. There are just over 40 children from the community who attend the school. We will take you on a brief journey past the crèche. 


We do ask that when you come to Morgan Bay, please can you bring, as a donation, age appropriate books, toys or even clothing. There will be a collection point at Rider Registration.


The Thandulwazi Maths & Science Academy is based in Johannesburg. There are over 3 000 children in attendance.

The Academy was created in 2005, a pioneering initiative of St Stithians College to provide educational growth opportunities for students and teachers based in public schools in greater Johannesburg.
There will be 4 riders supporting Thandulwazi. Get to know them and find out how you can help.


OUR SPONSORS

We are really pleased to have Investec on board as our title sponsor. Long may it last.

There will be over 20 people representing Investec, from some of their top clients, staff, management and more. Please get to know them and be kind to them. We want them back next year.

A special thanks must go to Luxliner Coaches, SG Convenience, Supergroup, Midas – look out for them riding as Pink Drive supporters on one of the days,  Twizza and Food Lovers Market for their unbelievable support. Get to know Mike, the owner of the Food Lovers Group. He’s a passionate mountain biker and has done a gazillion Epics.

Thank you for your support.


SPECIAL THANKS

A ride like this cannot take place without the support and assistance of more than just sponsors. We would like to thank the following:

Thomas River Farmers Association, Komga Farmers Association, Kembali Farms, Saints Farm, Morgan Bay Hotel, Mitford Hotel, Bayview Farm, The Shed Restaurant, Seagulls Hotel, Trennery’s Hotel, the Haga Haga Hotel, Oppie Plaas, Bidvest Car Rental, Casseys Ford Benoni, Buffalo Toyota, Ecotron, The Rep, Go Express and much more.


And finally: Please respect the MTB Code. You aren’t the only one out there riding. 

Have a look at our TLC CODE OF CONDUCTCLICK HERE to read.


Let’s hope that the weather plays “BALL”. Have a safe and fantastic ride.


Please check the website www.greatkeitrek.co.za to view any updates or changes.


See you in Morgan Bay on the 29th of April.


Regards


Rob Jackson and The Great Kei Trek Team