The first words from a tired John: "They were right. This race is REALLY not for sissies.". Seems like the first day has taken its toll.
But first things first. The race started with a bang. Good progress in the morning session, stopping only when needed, and for not more than 10 minutes at a time, the FNB Home Loans Team made some good progress. Lunch was a quick stop at Cullinan Castle, with as little time wasted as possible before tackling the valley of the Umkomaas river.
"The valley was spectacular," said John, still sounding like he needs to catch his breath. "but, so was the 6km climb to get out of the valley". Albert took a picture to commemorate this occasion. They will have many more opportunities to carry their bikes over the 'too rough to ride' sections in the coming weeks.
It took them 12 1/2 hours over the 100km for the first day, with a cumulative ascent of 3000m. The riders are tired and ready for an early night before an even tougher day tomorrow when they tackle 3200m climb over 107km. Route map and profiles for Day 2 below: