Cape Town’s 40th annual Cycle Tour has been cancelled due to extremely high winds that made it hard for cyclists to even stay on their bikes.
Gusts up to 100 kilometres per hour forced organisers to cancel the race- the first time it has been cancelled in its 40 year history.
Race director David Bellairs told a press conference: “We were forced to make a difficult decision to stop the 40th edition of the Cape Town Cycle Tour. The morning presented a number of challenges, not least of which were the wind speeds considerably higher than had been predicted yesterday. This combined with the large fire that broke out in Hout Bay in the early hours of this morning and the added risk of protest action on route.”
Cyclists shared their experiences on social media, including some who said they saw their bikes “flying”:
For the first time in my life I saw a bicycle flying this morning. Sad but a good call by the CTCycleTour to cancel the race. Safety first pic.twitter.com/bGhHFNcmAw
— OG Molefe (OG_Molefe) March 12, 2017
German ex-professional rider Jens Voigt had hoped to ride:
I am soo sad and dissapointed about the cancellation of the Capetown Cycle Tour.Crazy strong winds and a bushfire-safety first.What a bummer pic.twitter.com/mHkba70kih— Jens Voigt (@thejensie) March 12, 2017
But the wind was simply too strong:
The Cape Town cycle tour was cancelled this morning. 35,000 riders. Unheard of! The cause… Wind!#climatechange pic.twitter.com/E604NolJqZ— Johan (@Johan48610287) March 12, 2017