- Team bicycles were stolen from a guesthouse in Paarl on Wednesday night.
- This theft is a significant blow for the team - due to fly to the African championships in Egypt later this week.
- Members of the public are urged to look out for these high-end bicycles, some of which feature unique paintwork.
The Mauritian cycling team suffered the theft of 12 bicycles from a guest farm in Paarl, on Wednesday night.
"Riders went down to the cellar this morning ahead of their training ride and to their horror discovered that their bicycles were gone," says coach Trevor Court.
Paarl was selected as a training venue for the team, allowing Mauritian team riders to participate in the Tour de Cap and Cape Town Cycle Tour. The team was to fly to Egypt on Friday, ahead of the African Championships, scheduled for 23-27 March.
Amongst the stolen road bikes are premium brands such as Trek, Specialized, Scott and Ridley.
The team's time trial bikes were also taken. These include high-end machines, such as a Specialized S-Works complete with Reynolds disc aero wheel, an Argon 18 with Boyd wheels, Canyon frame with Mavic disc wheel and a Felt.
The Mauritian cycling team includes Kim Le Court, who won the Cape Town Cycle Tour women's race.
"Police did find bicycle tyre tracks on the farm and followed this spoor for some distance, but it eventually vanished at a big dirt road. We suspect the bicycles were loaded onto a vehicle," says Court.
Desperately trying to find replacement bikes to race
Images of the stolen bikes rapidly spread across the Western Cape and greater South African cycling community, but the bikes remain amiss – without any leads.
The team have delayed their flight until Sunday. Hoping to source bicycles for the riders to use.
"We are borrowing bicycles where we can, from friends and acquaintances. The UCI African centre has also made three bicycles available and we will get some sent from the Mauritian federation. If anyone in the local cycling community can help, it will be much appreciated," appealed Court.
Anyone with information that could lead to the recovery of the bicycles in question, can contact Trevor Court at 062 770 8061 or the Bicycle Garage in Paarl on 061 524 6086.