THE annual Vodacom Tour de Soweto Cycle Challenge will give the area a boost by providing job opportunities and promoting the colourful Joburg township.
While small businesses in the vicinity of the race will benefit from cyclists and spectators purchasing from them, between 300 and 500 locals will be employed as marshals and ushers to serve at the various water points.
Those serving as marshals will be trained and receive continuing training, with the prospect of marshalling at other races in Gauteng. Race co-ordinators from the local Lethabo Cycling Club will also assist with the race.
In terms of promoting Soweto, race organisers have commented on the large number of queries received from non-local cyclists wishing to spend a night in Soweto and experience the colourful township.
Surprisingly, the majority of entries received have been from cyclists living outside Soweto.
The Challenge takes place on August 16.
The race, which aims to promote cycling in the townships, will start and end at Mofolo Park.
To cater for cyclists of all fitness levels, there'll be a 94km race, a 50km fun ride, and a 10km dikwiel and schools race.
One can enter on-line at www.tourdesoweto.co.za. Entries will close on August 5 and entry fees are R100 for the 94km race, R50 for the 50km fun ride, and R10 for the 10km dikwiel race.
Schools can enter the Schools Challenge free of charge.
Prize monies for the race will total R75000 in cash prizes this year, plus an additional R15000 for schools. - Sapa