Tour of Homewood to put George on the mountain biking map
The Garden Route town of George will be transformed into a significant mountain biking destination with the introduction of the Tour of Homewood, a new three-day mountain bike stage race, to be based at Fancourt, South Africa’s premier golf resort from 4-6 September 2015.
Homewood is the previous name of the colonial estate (1879–1903) on which Fancourt has been developed, representing old-world charm and everything fine, including accommodation, food and outdoor experiences at the foot of the majestic Outeniqua Mountains.
The Tour of Homewood includes three stages with distances ranging from 70-80km per day with around 1400m of vertical ascent per stage on average. Each stage will start and finish at Fancourt where special Tour of Homewood accommodation packages will be made available. There will also be external accommodation options available.
“There is great mountain biking around the town of George, but there is no annual mountain bike event there that makes the most of this. We feel that the Tour of Homewood will help develop George as a quality mountain biking destination in a way that Fancourt has done with golf,” said Henco Rademeyer of Dryland Event Management, the company that organises some of South Africa’s leading mountain biking and trail running events.
“Instead of driving a wedge between golf and mountain biking, we’re aiming to make the most of the strengths of the two sports as many people enjoy both. While we’ll be making use of the walkways around the links for the mountain bike stage exits and entrances to and from Fancourt, the actual race stages will be tough, yet fun. It’s a proper mountain bike stage race with a golf flavour for those that love both.
“There will be two coastal stages and one stage that will head into the Karoo and back. We plan to incorporate the famous Montagu Pass and the abundance of great singletrack around Saasveld and Jonkersberg,” added Rademeyer.
Each afternoon there will be a short golf challenge for those Tour of Homewood participants keen to experience playing on the world-renowned courses. This will be optional but there will be daily prizes and an overall prize for the best mountain bike and golf performance combined.
“The profile of the committed mountain biker today is the same as those who played golf here 10 years ago. The growth of mountain biking, trail running and hiking has given people more to do with more family involvement. We like this and feel the Tour of Homewood is a great way to give mountain bikers a first class experience with their families and friends,” said Lloyd Martindale, General Manager Golf at Fancourt.
“While the Tour of Homewood is a serious mountain bike race, we’ll be making sure the bit of daily golf flavour is fun and all-inclusive. Come race the Tour of Homewood, but bring your clubs for some additional Fancourt fun!”
Entries will be via invitation. All those on the Fancourt and Dryland Event Management databases will receive an emailed invitation. There are also corporate packages available that include flights, transport and Fancourt accommodation to and from Johannesburg.
“What better than to leave the busy city life of Johannesburg on a Thursday and be flown to and from George with five-star accommodation at Fancourt for three days of high quality mountain bike racing?” remarked Rademeyer.