Cyclists battled to stay on their bikes with wind speeds up to 100km/*. Picture: Ian Landsberg/Independent Media
CAPE TOWN - There was plenty of disappointment but also some understanding for the decision to cancel the 40th Cape Town Cycle Tour.

The race was cancelled at the last moment after a combination of factors were taken into consideration by the organisers. In the main, the higher-than-predicted wind speeds finally led to the cancellation. Other factors included a large fire that broke out in Hout Bay in the early hours of Sunday morning.

Azhar Vadi, 34, who had cycled about 3 000km from Musina to Cape Town, said he was a bit disappointed, especially after having travelled so far.

“This would have been my first tour. It is hard to swallow the decision made, but I will be good. I left Musina on the 7th of February and arrived in Cape Town last Thursday.”

Vadi had been cycling to raise awareness about South African education and the need for communities to get involved in raising funds for schools in the rural areas.

“We were aiming to raise about R1 million but we are way off our target. However, we will continue with the spreading of the word as the movement for better education never stops.”

Picture: Ian Landsberg/Independent Media

Lorraine Hendricks, from the Ocean View Cleaners, said they were not happy about the decision because they had been looking forward to the Cycle Tour.

“I am very worried about the cyclists who came from very far places. Fifty seven of our cleaners came out in support of the tour today. This is the one day of the year that we are all excited about, but due to circumstances that no one has control over, we could not do what we love, which is helping out at the cycle tour.”

Robin Adams, who had been cycling to raise awareness for the need for sanitary pads for girls in schools, said the decision to cancel was for the best.

“We were struggling to hold on to our bicycles and I knew that it was a bad day for cycling.”

He added that Sunday’s weather made him think of the race in 2009, which had similar wind speeds.

“The drive for pads will continue in full force. So far we have collected up to 2 000 and we were promised more from other people,” said Adams.

Picture: Armand Hough/Independent Media

Maxine Wolffe, who was going to ride a tandem with her husband for the Sunflower Fund, said she understands why the race was cancelled as the conditions were not conducive for racing.

“I’m not sure how much we managed to raise for Sunflower but we have been amazed at the support of family, friends and clients.

“We will definitely be in the starting blocks for the Cape Town Cycle Tour in 2018. Maybe the start should be changed to the stadium and possibly April instead of March.”

Cape Argus