Media Release: Minister Alan Winde welcomes Rainmaker Rollercoaster to WC
The Western Cape is on track to become a premier cycling destination, with the addition of a world first for its race day calendar-the Rainmaker RollerCoaster.
The Western Cape will host the Rainmaker RollerCoaster, the world’s first seven day point to point gravel stage race in October.
The event is the brainchild of HotChillee, which hosts the LONDON-PARIS and the Cape Roleur races.
The Rainmaker RollerCoaster begins with a sunset time trial in the Bontebok National Park, in Swellendam, and will finish in Plettenberg Bay. With a distance of 550km, the route follows the gravel roads of the Swellendam farmlands, into the semi desert of the Little Karoo, along the lush Garden Route, through the Knysna forest and onto the coastline of Plettenberg Bay. Participants will stay overnight in tented race villages.
Minister of Economic Opportunities, Alan Winde, welcomed the selection of the Western Cape as the venue for the event.
“We already host several of the world’s largest road and off-road bike events, but having a seven stage gravel race take place in the region will further demonstrate what the region has to offer local and international tourists,” he said.
“By growing our cycling economy, we’re growing tourism in the smaller towns along the cycle routes, establishing a new set of necessary skills which will create new jobs and showcasing the beauty of the Western Cape to visitors from around the world,” he said.
The Western Cape Government has focussed on cycle tourism as part of its Project Khulisa project to develop the tourism industry. As part of these plans, three new cycle routes have been developed throughout the province- with two of these- the Cross Cape, and the Cederberg Circuit (to be launched next month) featuring gravel riding.
Jan Joubert, Rainmaker CEO said: 'With the Western Cape as its backdrop, this will be a truly unique opportunity for all involved. It is very exciting to be supporting an event like this; which is not only giving gravel cycling the world-class stage it deserves, but also supporting the amazing communities in the region and along the route.
Saturday 6 October: Stage 1 – Swellendam (Prologue) (16km/135m)
Sunday 7 October: Stage 2 – Swellendam – Swellendam (57km/1150m)
Monday 8 October: Stage 3 – Swellendam - Riversdale (107km/2000m)
Tuesday 9 October: Stage 4 – Riversdale - Calitzdorp (109km/2100m)
Wednesday 10 October: Stage 5 – Calitzdorp – Oudtshoorn (53km/350m)
Thursday 11 October: Stage 6 - Oudtshoorn – Knysna (140km/2150m)
Friday 12 October: Stage 7 – Knysna – Plettenberg Bay (74km/1650m)