Skip Navigation

The Boys in Baggies Want Yellow

Press Release / 27.02.2018

© Nick Muzik/Cape Epic/SPORTZPICS

Cannondale Factory Racing’s baggy-wearing duo of Manuel Fumic and Henrique Avancini might be one of the most entertaining teams at the Absa Cape Epic, but don’t let their affable demeanours fool you – they’re here to win
 
Maybe it’s their off-the-wall sartorial direction or perhaps the occasional tail-whip that has endeared them to fans all over the world, but one thing is for sure – the showmanship of Manuel Fumic and Henrique Avancini is indisputable. Last year the team celebrated an amazing run of form winning two stages and spending four successive days in the yellow zebra jersey before a string of mechanicals and poor luck all but put an end to their 2017 podium ambitions. This year they will be looking to reverse 2017’s shortcomings by riding smarter and playing to their strengths, particularly when it comes to the Prologue which has become a happy hunting ground for the cross-country specialists.
 
“We’re really looking forward to the Prologue on Table Mountain. It’s not every day you get to ride on one of the natural wonders of the world,” said Fumic. “The Stage 5 time-trial is also new and should mix up the racing in a big way. The goal for us, of course, is the overall podium. We need to see how it goes over the days, but I think this year’s Absa Cape Epic will become really tactical. There are so many new teams and big names, and it’s not easy to single out any particular threat, but it will sure make for some good and intense racing.”
 
As national XCO champions of their respective countries – Germany and Brazil – Fumic and Avancini are a lot alike and complement each other on and off the bike. While they lack the stage-racing polish of some of the more established teams, such as the BULLS and Investec-Songo-Specialized, they’ve grown considerably as a unit over the past two years and feel better prepared than any of their previous visits to the Absa Cape Epic.
 
“Last year was a good learning process for Cannondale Factory Racing,” says Avancini. “I wouldn’t say we don't train specifically for the Absa Cape Epic, but I believe Manny (Fumic) and I are going to be in good shape. We’ve ridden well together in the past and know each other well. Last year we had some good results and it would be great to be in the mix again on the GC.”
 
For that to happen however, the Cannondale Factory Racing outfit will have to target the shorter stages and that would mean a calculated approach to the Prologue and the Stage 5 time-trial in Wellington. That’s not to say they won’t be competitive on some of the longer days. Who can forget last year’s Stage 1 victory in Hermanus? Or their stellar ride on the Grand Finale of 2016 – where they pulled away from the chasing peloton and snatched victory from the Centurion Vaude squad just moments before the finish line.
 
This year’s polarising route has been a big talking point with the general consensus leaning more towards a course that favours the marathon riders. Might we see one of the closely contested Absa Cape Epics ever? Well, on paper there are some exceptionally strong teams looking to do damage, and Avancini reckons the racing will naturally be aggressive with more teams fighting for positions on the GC than ever before.
 
“It's a route that suits the endurance riders a lot better than us, so the race pace is probably going to be even more aggressive than last year,” said Avancini. “Alban Lakata and Kristian Hynek are looking good. So are Nino Schurter and Matthias Stirnemann who return as defending champions. And then there’s the Investec-Songo-Speciliazed team of Jaroslav Kulhavy and Howard Grotts who can’t be written off. Personally, I would love to see Karl Platt do well again. I have a massive respect for him and would be nice to fight with him in the front.”
 
But it’s not all business for the boys in baggies. The two are very much fan-favourites here in South Africa and want to entertain the crowd just as much as target results.
 
“Honestly, I enjoy riding bikes. I enjoy riding bikes fast and I just like to share that with people. I race knowing it’s my job and I want to make this wonderful sport better. Manny and I just enjoy what we do and it’s nice to see that people like that,” quipped Avancini.
 
Will we see the boys rocking their baggies again this year?
 
“Baggies are a favourite in our team but let me tell you the girls prefer the lycra so maybe you’ll see us in lycra on some of the stages this year!” 

[If you enjoyed this story and would like SleepMonsters to continue reporting on Adventure Racing then we need your help. Please support our Patreon campaign or make a donation via PayPal.]

More About ABSA Cape Epic

Kulhavy, Grotts Cruise to Overall Victory


Courtney Helps Langvad to Four in a Row


Illnesses Forces Podium Change in Women’s Race


Songo in League of Their Own


Investec Songo Specialized Teams Tighten Their Grip on Stage 5


Birthday Win for Langvad and Courtney


Geismayr, Rohrbach Victorious on Queen Stage


Canyon Topeak Stamp Their Authority on Stage 3


Songo Keep Their Perfect Record Intact


More Drama, Same Result For Cannondale


Third Win Consolidates Langvad’s, Courtney’s Lead


Cross-Country Riders Take Revenge


Composure Wins the Day for Langvad/Courtney


Marathon Racers Steal the Show


Langvad and Courtney Dominate Women’s Category


A Look At The 2018 Prologue Venue, Table Mountain National Park


Women’s Race Wide Open With Untested Combinations


Battle Royal Earmarked for the Prologue


Top Step Beckons For Team Centurion Vaude


Kate Courtney and Annika Langvad Team Up as Investec-Songo-Specialized 2


It’s Full Speed Ahead for Investec-Songo-Specialized


Team BULLS Ready to Rock and Roll


Candice Lill and Adelheid Morath Team up for the 2018 Absa Cape Epic


Spitz And De Groot Hungry For The Win


Lakata Back for 9th Time In Search Of The Elusive Win


Absa Cape Epic Launches New Route to Showcase The Wonders of the Cape


Our Patrons

Adventure Race Croatia

Danish AR Union

Open Adventure

Rootstock Racing

TanzNavigation

SleepMonsters Patreon

Thank you to all our

adventure racing

patrons


Adventure Race Croatia

Danish AR Union

Open Adventure

Rootstock Racing

Tanz Navigation

-- -- --

Brian Gatens

-- -- --

Adventure Enablers

Chipp Dodd

Celia Nash

David Ellis

Erik Sanders

Fiona McBryde

Graham Bird

Jakub Malik

Josh Hayman

Strong Machine AR

-- -- --

Adrian Crane

Barbara Campbell

Dejna Odvody

Ivan Park

Klaus Mygind

Lars Bukkehave

Marco Ponteri

Nigel Davison

Rob Horton

Semyon Yakimov