Strauss and Last Together Again for Cape Epic

We are delighted to announce that for this year’s Cape Epic Annie Last will join with Mariske Strauss to re-form the stage-winning partnership from 2017.


Annie will be supported at the race by her KMC Ekoï SR Suntour team, working in conjunction with Silverback OMX Pro Team.  Her and Mariske will race under the name ‘Silverback KMC’. Together we have a great pool of talented people to create a strong set-up for the ladies.

This composite team is already well-established in terms of friendship and racing experience. Who can forget Annie and Mariske’s Queen Stage victory last year, and their second place overall? Exceeding all expectations, this duo rode a superb race and we are so pleased that they will ride together again later this month.

This will be Mariske’s fourth Cape Epic, and as a proud South African, it is always a special race. For Annie, it’s her second time racing this World-famous event, and the experience of last year certainly has her excited for more:
 “I love racing my bike so am looking forward to getting on the start line! I really enjoyed the event last year so am excited to see what it’s got in store for us this year. It’s rare that you can race on a MTB for 8 days in a row, I like the challenge of back to back hard racing combined with the atmosphere of the event. It’s a real team effort to get to the finish line and being part of an event with a mixture of people all riding the same race makes it a real shared experience.”
Experiencing so many emotions over hundreds of kilometres is a huge test. Together with their physical strength and technical skills, Mariske and Annie demonstrated a brilliant relationship over eight days of racing. This will be a huge asset for the 2018 edition. Mariske explains:
“You really get to know your partner on a deep mental, spiritual and physical level. Its like a marriage that grows and develops over the 8 days. This will be my first epic with the same partner and must say really looking forward to it.”
Annie has also emphasised the importance of a strong partnership:
“We rode together last year and we learnt a lot then – it’s about being in tune with how your body is feeling on that day and being able to communicate that to your partner and for them to do the same, then you can work out the best way for you both to go as fast as possible! It worked out really well for us last year.”
With such a successful campaign in 2017, the Silverback KMC team will once again be on the hunt for podium places. We have every confidence that they can deliver, but we also keep in mind the constant variables of this ‘untamed’ event, as Mariske says:
“I would love to improve on last years result, that said this is an event that takes no prisoners and we will have to take it day by day. Ultimately I believe we are capable of another overall podium. I’m really looking forward to pushing myself to the limit. Epic is such an amazing event that brings so many different aspects to racing, hopefully we will have another year of good luck and good legs.”
The Cape Epic kicks off on Table Mountain on March 18th, and then traverses 658km of South Africa’s beautiful Western Cape before finishing on 25th March at the famous Val di Vie wine estate where we hope to enjoy some more podium fizz!
Follow this incredible journey on our social media channels with live Twitter updates and daily Facebook albums, plus all the latest reports here on our website.
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