After the York Enduro Mountain Bike Rally in Sabie, we extended our Lowveld stay and were warmly hosted by Mankele Mountain Bike Park for 4 days before taking to the start of their signature event – the Isuzu 3 Towers.
In the 7 years of its existence this 3 day stage race has evolved into a benchmark event on the South African mountain bike calendar. It caters for racers, riders, families and spectators alike with several route options varying in both technicality and length.
Participants have the option to enter either The Stage Race (193km in total), The Challenge (142km in total) or the Mncane (102km in total) depending on their fitness and inclination to suffer. Well known for the technicality of their natural trails, Mankele made a point of taming their tracks this year making the route more flowing without sacrificing the challenge.
The event includes the customary camping facilities in the tented village but what makes the event so intimate is the fact that participants can bring their own camping gear and make it a family weekend holiday. Staying in one spot for all 3 stages has its advantages – just ask the kids!
Ben Melt Swanepoel and I were reunited as a team for the Isuzu 3 Towers as it was the 4th event of 5 we will be doing together as Team Garmin in 2016. We both absolutely love this event and were looking forward to sharing the experience.
From the start of day one to the end of the third and final day we raced as a unit working together like a well-oiled machine. This in itself was a big achievement for us as we had worked hard at perfecting our teamwork and we finished the race feeling 100 % satisfied with our team dynamic. Focussing on the process rather than the outcome also yielded solid results and we managed to win all 3 stages as well as the overall title in the Mixed Category!
Isuzu 3 Towers will always be a special event as the organizer’s passion for mountain biking courses through their amazingly fun trails and the vibrant atmosphere in the race village. It’s hard to explain a 3 Towers experience in a single race report, so best you come and experience it for yourself.
A big thanks to the Isuzu 3 Towers for once again hosting an exceptional event and for adding hand-built single trails every year! It’s not often that you get riders finishing a tough stage race with a huge smile and yearning for more!