Gear up for annual road cycling challenge in Paarl

Early Bird entries are now open for the annual Bouckaert-Soenen Road Cycling Challenge on Sunday February 4, which will bring thousands of cyclists to Paarl. The races, organised by the Rotary Club of Paarl, are held under the auspices of the Pedal Power Association (PPA) and start at the De Poort heritage centre in Pine Street.

There are three races around Paarl Mountain that day, measuring 123km, 72km and 46km. The longer 123km route is suitable for league and more experienced riders and will be a seeding race for the Cape Town Cycling Challenge 2019.

It will pass through the towns of Wellington, Hermon and Riebeek Kasteel, with a tough climb over Bothmanskloof Pass. After the descent, the route turns back to Paarl via the Voor-Paardeberg area, before returning via Agter Paarl to the finsish near Strawberry King.

The 72km route follows the long route but cuts out Hermon and Riebeek Kasteel and joins the long route again at the Sonop turn-off to Voor Paardeberg before returning to the finish via Agter-Paarl.

The 46km route goes directly around Paarl Mountain and has no serous climbs. It joins the other two routes at the R44/Paardeberg Road junction and back to the finish via Agter Paarl. It is a fun-ride event aimed at the whole family and will have plenty of entertainment, food and drink available at the finish venue at De Poort. Families must please note no under-16s may ride the 123km route, no under-14s may ride the 72km route, and under-12s must be accompanied by an adult on the 46km route.

Visit for details and early bird entries. Proceeds go to childhood development projects supported by Paarl Rotary.