Rodriguez and Hermida to tackle the untamed Cape Epic once again
Friday, 8th March 2019 – BAHRAIN MERIDA Pro Cycling Team Ambassador Joaquim Rodriguez and former World Champion José Antonio Hermida will team up at their 3rd Absa Cape Epic (17-24th March 2019) with MERIDA FACTORY RACING team wearing the unique design of the BAHRAIN MERIDA kit by Sportful.
Last year, despite crashes and punctures they pushed on throughout the week and finished their race with a strong ride in the final stage. A fantastic top ten (7th place) result and a demonstration of their class and strength.
For 2019, the team will head to South Africa with a clear goal. To get Purito Rodriguez to become a member of the “Amabubesi” – the exclusive Absa Cape Epic Finisher Club reserved to bikers that have finished three Cape Epics – and to demonstrate what they can do in the highly competitive Master category. The intention is to leave their stamp on the various stages and play a key role in the overall standing of the event.
The Cape Epic is only 10 days away and Joaquim Rodriguez is excited about competing in that compelling race, like the first time: “I’m keen to complete my 3rd Cape Epic and this means that I will be awarded the membership of Amabubesi. It’s something that will make me proud, because this is a legendary mtb race. That will be our main target, but we will try to improve last year’s performance and leave our mark on the highly competitive Master category”.
The previous road racing star feels now more confident as a mountain biker, thanks to hard training sessions with his friends and co-rider Hermida, who is a hugely experienced Cape Epic racer. “Preparations for the 2019 event have been going well” commented Purito “I think I was able to improve my mountain biking skills even further”.
As in the last two years, the team will wear a unique kit which is based on the BAHRAIN MERIDA Pro Cycling Team kit in design, but this time with a different set of colors, that closely matches the understated tones of their new bike for the event: the slightly modified MERIDA ONE-TWENTY 9000, a more marathon/stage race orientated version, as José explains: “Well, we are fully convinced that the ONE-TWENTY is the bike of the future. This ultra-versatile machine is at the same level as the 100mm bike, with more or less same weight but increased stability and ‘safety’, lightning fast acceleration and lots and lots of fun to ride, in particular when the course gets more demanding”.
Daily race diary videos and race reports produced by the two heroes will be shared via MERIDA social media accounts, youtube channel and on www.merida-bikes.com. Stay tuned!
Additional and high res images can be found here: http://oc.merida-bikes.com/index.php/s/tcTv6AWgyga9CN3
Photo credits MERIDA BIKES.