The Munga – dubbed the toughest race on earth – will take riders across the semi desert of the Karoo at the height of summer where temperatures can exceed 40ºC during the day.
The race – starting on 3 December 2014 – is open to pairs who have stumped up $10,000 to enter. Like the Cape Epic – one of the biggest mountain bike races in the world that is held in South Africa – both pros and amateurs are eligible to enter.
The rules appear simple: the first pair to make it wins $750,000 (£447,000), second nets $100,000 (£59,000) and third, $50,000 (£30,000). Organisers say there will also be a special ‘underdog’ prize: fourth place down to last will be entered into a lottery to win the remaining $100,000.
Harris told BikeRadar: “I kind of found myself asking the question, what part does money play in this pool of characteristics around what truly motivates, and I truly believe money would play a big part. I also wondered why these fringe races don’t offer prize money and thought it would be great to offer something which combined all these elements.”
The Munga mountain bike race will begin in or around the town of Bloemfontein in South Africa and will end on a wine farm just outside Stellenbosch. The route will be predominantly off road. The route will be marked so riders will not have to think about navigation. The route will be at least 1000kms, and possibly a bit more.