Today was the best day so far. Maybe because it was pancake day. But more about that later.
After a late breakfast and a group stretch, we left Ficksburg at around 9am, stopping on the way out for the group photo at the GM dealership in McCabe Street. The cycling today was characterized by gentle rolling hills with some thrilling downhills.
Greg tried to pull a Brendan by being the first person on the tour to have a puncture. But unfortunately for him, Tony was cycling next to him when the ‘pfffft’ sound emanated from his back wheel, and made him change the tube rather than get into the car.
Talking about Brendan, he never remembers to change gears when he stops. So invariably as we get back onto our bikes all we hear is “I’m in the wrong $&?!$&?! gear again.” Maybe he’ll get it right after nine days.
We stopped for the compulsory pancake stop at Constantia Farm Stall just before Clocolan. I think I was being punished for doing some shopping (this place has lots and lots of lovely things for sale) because my pancake took forever to arrive. This was a travesty because I had waited a whole year for it.
After wolfing down the most delicious pancakes south of the equator we were all strong, making good time for Ladybrand. Clinton make contact with a bee on the way in, which could have been a problem considering he is allergic to bee stings. But Ryan dispensed the necessary medication so Clinton could continue.
We were escorted into town by Arij and Lesedi from the ER24 base here. A quick stop at the GM dealership here for a photo opportunity for both our sponsors Chevrolet UTE Force, as well as for Maluti, the local newspaper.
Everyone is well-rested after a massage and a few beers at our lovely hotel for the night, Cranberry Cottage. Tonight it’s dinner at the hotel.
Tomorrow we start with a 3km climb our of Ladybrand towards Wepener but everyone assures me they can’t wait!