The Berge & Dale road cycling race will celebrate its 20th anniversary in style next month, with coming on board as naming sponsor for one of the country’s most popular events.

The annual race takes place in Krugersdorp on the West Rand on February 23, starting and finishing at the Silverstar Casino. The feature distance will be over 108km, while there is also an offering of 60km.

A premier seeding event for the Cape Town Cycle Tour, it presents another chance for race organisers ASG Events and Takealot, the country’s biggest online store, to cement their growing partnership.

Having already sponsored one of the country’s premier road stage tours in the Tour of Good Hope, Takealot chief marketing officer Julie-Anne Walsh said the Berge & Dale formed part of their long-term strategy.

“Thanks to our close relationship with ASG, this is more than just adding immediate value,” she said.

“Takealot’s aim is to establish itself as a cycling destination so anything that can help us achieve that, such as visibility at events like this, is key.

“It will also give us an opportunity to interact with cyclists to understand what they want to buy online, where the product gaps are and source information from them to take our store offering to a superior level.”

Walsh added they were looking forward to continuing their partnership with ASG Events as it had the potential to benefit both parties.

“ASG have been instrumental in helping us roll out our cycling store, with the cycling expertise they bring to the table.

“In terms of our business model, we want to form closer relationships with our customers and interact with them to get a better understanding of how we can support them online.”

ASG Group chief executive Heinrich Dannhauser said they had enjoyed a fantastic relationship with Takealot over the past few years.

“We already offer some of the best brands and products to local consumers, as do Takealot, and, with this partnership, they look set to become South Africa’s biggest online cycling store,” he said.

“They are becoming a very visible name in all areas of South African cycling and the support they are giving to the industry is tremendous.”

Takealot, he said, were recently voted as one of the country’s most trusted brands “so this joining of forces looks like it could add real value to the cycling community”.

Caption: have stepped in to sponsor one of South Africa’s oldest road cycling races, the Berge & Dale, which takes place in Krugersdorp on the West Rand on February 23. Photo: Mariola Biela