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The 2017 Vodacom Hippo Hollow MTB Challenge on 3rd June made a big impact in the biking world... taking participants through some of the most spectacular riding around Hazyview.

The race route passed through Hippo Hollow Country Estate and Elephant Whispers, thereafter taking cyclists past the Sabie and Marite rivers, forest plantations, lush indigenous forest, agricultural lands and of course some hills..

There were four events, all of which started and finished at Induna Adventures on the outskirts of Hazyview. The 70-kilometre marathon, the 40-kilometre half-marathon, a 15-kilometre fun ride and a two-kilometre kiddies race ensured there was something for everyone.

Vodacom also ensured a good prize purse with R15 000, R7 500 and R5 000 for the top three men and women in the 70-kilometre marathon; and R5 000 to the men and women’s winners of the half marathon.

You don’t get a mountain-bike race getting this close to the Kruger,” said event director, André Visagie.

“In designing the routes, we ensured that the marathon was sufficiently challenging, as well as highly rewarding. There’s an increasing number of easier marathons on the calendar these days, where average speeds aren’t far off those in road races. Our marathon route had 1 600 metres of ascent and a high percentage of stimulating single track - we needed to make the event worth driving to for those competitors coming from Gauteng,” added Visagie.

“The half-marathon, with 1 100 metres of vertical ascent, has to be one of the most beautiful half-marathon race routes in the country. It must have been difficult for riders to focus on the trail because the scenery is just stunning,” added Visagie.

Non-riding supporters enjoyed craft beer on tap and other refreshments from the food and drink stalls as well as live music. Children had a number of fun activities to choose from at Induna Adventures, including an obstacle course, jumping castle and face painting.

All finishers of the mountain-bike events received commemorative medals and Vodacom will gave away lucky-draw prizes.

Dylan Victor will offered a skills clinic the day before the event as well as putting on a bike stunt show on race day.

The Challenge was a first class - the first of many more.

The 2018 event will be happening in June again and will be bigger and better - join our facebook page to stay updated.

          2017 RACE