Tuesday, 22 October 2012: The 2012 Mpact Addo Mountain Bike Challenge due to take place in the Addo Elephant National Park area over the weekend of 27 – 28 October 2012 has been cancelled due to the impact of inclement weather conditions experienced in the area over the past week.
The organising team tried to do a route inspection on Monday, but could not even get into the Zuurberg area of the race routes. Most areas were still impassable and extensive damage has been done to the surrounding roads and trails.
The following statement was issued by the Addo Elephant National Park Conservation Manager, John Adendorff:
“SANParks, in particular Addo Elephant National Park, would like to make it clear that it does not think that it would be advisable for the proposed mountain bike challenge to go ahead. The Zuurberg mountain range has received over 360mm of rain over the past week and many of the trails that were to be used are either flooded or very badly damaged.”
”I would also like to stress, that due to our work load after the rains, that we will in no way be able to help with rangers or provide a portable radio network for the race. I strongly urge that the race be postponed for a month or two so that we can repair some of the damage and get back onto our feet. I trust that the situation prevailing in the area will be given serious consideration before a decision is made.”
Kelvin Viljoen, the General Manager of Mpact Corrugated representing the main sponsor of the event, released the following statement earlier today:
“IT IS WITH REGRET THAT MPACT HAS BEEN FORCED TO CANCELL THIS WEEKENDS ADDO MTB CHALLENGE DUE TO THE “WEATHER GODS” BLESSING US WITH HUGE AMOUNTS OF RAIN.”
“FIRST AND FOREMOST, SAFETY MUST BE OUR TOP PRORITY AND THE REPORTS WE HAVE RECEIVED FROM PARKS BOARD AND ADDO OFFICIALS CLEARLY INDICATE THAT MPACT AS THE MAJOR SPONSOR CANNOT GUARANTEE CYCLISTS A SAFE PASSAGE ON THE VARIOUS COURSES. TRAILS HAVE BEEN WASHED AWAY AND WILL NOT BE REPAIRED IN TIME AND MORE RAIN IS FORECAST LATER IN THE WEEK. WE TRUST YOU WILL UNDERSTAND OUR PREDICAMENT AND REST ASSURED WE WILL BE BACK IN 2013, WEATHER PERMITTING OF COURSE.”
We call on all fellow mountain bikers to understand the circumstances leading up to this decision and to accept our sincere apologies for being unable to host this prestigious event this year. We will be refunding all entry fees to those riders who have already entered the event. Riders who have entered online will receive an email later this week detailing the process to follow, while those riders who entered at the local cycle shops will be able to collect their entry fees from the cycle shop where they entered from Wednesday.