UCT PhD student Marc Brighton will be competing in the 2015 Absa Cape Epic with his team mate, UCT alumnus Steven Mitchell. Here's a quick Q&A with the cyclists before the big event.
What are you studying at UCT?
Marc: I am doing the final (hopefully) year of my PhD in Chemical Engineering. I also graduated from UCT in 2010 in Chemical Engineering.
Steven: I completed my degree BA Film and Media Production in 2009.
Are you a member of the UCT cycling club?
Marc: Yes, probably the longest serving member (since 2009).
Do you cycle on campus?
Marc: Sometimes I do. Cycling up to UCT (especially if you include a detour onto the tracks behind Rhodes Memorial) is decent training and a good way to beat the traffic.
Steven: Yes, I used to cycle to lectures every now and then.
How do you feel about UCT being the first-time host of the Absa Cape Epic Prologue this year?
Marc: I am quite chuffed. This should be an interesting event.
Steven: I think it is great. The Absa Cape Epic is the most televised mountain bike race in the world, so it will provide fantastic publicity for one of Africa's top universities.
Is this your first Absa Cape Epic?
Marc: No, I've completed an Absa Cape Epic in 2012.
Why did you enter?
Marc: It is a pinnacle of endurance mountain biking and quite addictive.
Steven: It's been on my bucket list. I've always wanted to face this challenge.
Have you trained together? Will you make a good team?
Marc: Steven is based in Johannesburg. We managed to train together for a week over the New Year when we were in Plettenberg Bay. I think we will make a good team as we have been friends for years and had some good adventures together.
Steven: We have been able to do a bit of training, but unfortunately live in different cities so have done most of our training apart. We have done many adventures together so far in our lives and are getting on very well with each other.
Have you trained enough?
Marc: I am quite confident that I have done enough training. I am at least as fit as I was for the Absa Cape Epic in 2012 and have had the benefit of three more years of mountain biking experience.
Steven: I don't think you can ever train enough, but hopefully what I have managed to do, will do the trick.
How would you encourage fellow students and alumni to start cycling?
Marc: I'm not quite certain, but I think the traffic congestion is doing that all on its own!
Steven: I will absolutely encourage them. It is a great form of exercise that puts no strain on your joints. It is also a great way to travel without damaging the environment.
How are you feeling about the Absa Cape Epic starting on 15 March 2015 here on UCT's campus?
Marc: A bit nervous, but mainly very distracted.
Steven: Petrified and excited – it is going to be a great adventure.
Return to UCT hosts Absa Cape Epic Prologue hub
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