Cyclists race to raise funds for Aids orphans
A trip to Cape Town by road is never much fun.
Long stretches of desolate landscape through the Karoo seem to drag on forever, and for 32 men and women those long hours will turn into days as they do the trip on bicycles.
Now into its seventh year, the Endurance Cycle Tour, sponsored by Sun International, has attracted a strong international flavour with cyclists coming from countries as diverse as Iran, Chad and Germany.
The 1645kilometre trek will be completed over seven days, by which time there are sure to be many sore bums and legs.
For German cyclist Reiner Stoltz the event has become a highlight in his cycling calendar.
"I have been coming each year since its inception in 2002 and look forward to it immensely," said Stoltz shortly before the race started early Friday morning at Sun City.
The event has managed to raise R3million since its inception. The money has gone to the Orphanage Housing Project in North West province and Nazareth House in the Western Cape.
Both these organisations provide shelter and food for orphans left destitute by the Aids pandemic.
But are the people of Germany conscious of what Aids is doing to Africa?
According to the 66-year-old Stoltz, they are.
"There is an awareness in Germany but personally I feel this is one small way of making a contribution to the people's plight.
"As I say, it may be small but at least I know the money we are raising is going to worthy causes."