20 Oct, 2015

Looking for the best bike

In spite of being a single speed, steel constructed bike, the Surly Karate Monkey gave a good account of itself during the “Best Bike in Africa” competition.
There is normally quite a bit of excitement at the pump track as cyclists of all ages try and beat the standing record.

By voting for what you think is the “Best Bike in Africa” at the 2015 Standard Bank Africa Cycle Fair, you could actually win that bike!

How this competition works is that all bike manufacturers or distributors are invited to enter one of their offerings where they are displayed for the public to view them, and possibly even test them out on the Standard Bank Africa Cycle Fair’s test track.

Once you’ve decided which bike deserves the title the most, you send your entry in to the organisers (follow the instructions at the “Best Bike in Africa” display) and, if the bike you chose receives the most votes and your entry is drawn, you could win the bike itself!

Last year, the prize was awarded to the Pyga Pascoe ONEFOURTY 650 in spite of stiff competition from the Momsen Vipa, the Surly Karate Monkey and various offerings from Giant, BMC and others.

But the “Best Bike in Africa” isn’t the only thing that’ll get your heart rate up at the 2015 Standard Bank Cycle Fair. There’ll also be a pump track where you can test out your bike skills.

“The pump track is the only one of its kind in the country,” explained organiser Rob Heath, “and it will definitely be there again this year.”

And the challenge is on for any rider to beat the record time for a circuit of this track.

Of course the other challenge at the Standard Bank Africa Cycle Fair is also completely different to any other event in South Africa. It is the “unofficial” All African Cyclocross Championships where riders of these interesting bicycles – it’s a “cross” between a mountain bike and a road bike – will vie for the title of the unofficial African champion of this discipline.

“We haven’t finalised whether the cyclocross event will be on the Saturday or the Sunday,” quipped Rob, “as this depends on whether the Springboks get into the semi-finals of the Rugby World Cup or not.”

This year’s Standard Bank Africa Cycle Fair will also have a distinct “international” flavour with more international interest in the show than ever before.

“We have two brands from Europe, one from Asia and one from Namibia,” explained Rob, “yes, Manie Heymans will again bring his fat bikes from Namibia.”

And with participation from Qhubeka, there is a chance that Douglas Ryder will bring some of the MTN Qhubeka p/b Samsung riders who have performed so well in races like the Tour de France, la Vuelta a España and the Tour of Britain.

“We would also love Johannesburg to be cycle friendly,” explained Rob, “so we have been involved with projects like the Eco Mobility Festival, the Freedom Ride and the Joberg Cycle Forum so I’m sure that Johannesburg Mayor Clr Parks Tau will also make an appearance.”

So with the kiddies cycling area, plenty of food stalls, stacks of interesting cycling-related exhibitors and events like an interprovincial schools mountain bike race, there is bound to be something for everyone at the 2015 Standard Bank Africa Cycle Fair. It takes place from 23 – 25 October at St Stithians College, Sandton.

For more information, go to

Raymond Travers

Raymond Travers

Modern Cyclist Editor |