CAPE-EPIC: LAKATA IS AN ANIMAL
It isn’t us saying it, it appeared on the live ticker for the legendary Cape Epic stage race in South Africa. Alban Lakata and Kevin Evans, riding for a joint team under the MTN Business Qhubeka Topeak Ergon team name, acquired the moniker while riding the initial stage.
It was a day which saw them cover 117km, with 2190 meters of climbing. For Alban, silver medallist at the World Marathon championships last year, together with his team mate, South African Kevin Evans, the day was used as a declaration of intent. “An hour before the finish line Kevin had a puncture. It was obvious that we were going to have to fight for the win” Alban told us following the day’s racing. The puncture left them behind, but working together they closed in on and overtook the leading team. On a stint following a railroad, they were then able to build a 4 minute lead by the time they crossed the line. This saw them finish the stage in 4hrs 35mins 52.3s. The other two of the podium steps were occupied by ‘Team Songo-Specialized by DCM’ with riders Christoph Sauser (CH) and Burry Stander (RSA), and in third Rabobank-Giant Off Road with Emil Lindgren (SE) and Fabian Giger (CH).
Clearly the Austrian’s pairing with Kevin Evans of Team MTN Business Qhubeka was unbeatable and hopes to set the tone for the entire race, not only for the first stage from Cape Town. It reflects their form from the recent Subaru Sani2c stage race a couple of weeks ago.
Also riding for Team Topeak Ergon was the British Marathon Champion Sally Bigham. Riding in a mixed team with the Adidas Big-Tree Team alongside the German Nico Pfitzenmaier (who is a South African Resident) they were able to take third for the first stage – making their ambitions for the podium clear.
Tomorrow’s stage will see the riders riding around Ceres for 90km, taking in 1650m of climbing.