Mixed category 

Jennie Stenerhag set to race mixed category in her final year as a pro

Past champion 

mixing it up

The race for the dark green Mixed category Jersey has always been a hugely interesting one, thanks to the big-name riders who have competed for it over the years and exciting male/female combinations. The dynamics of racing in a male/female partnership obviously also adds a whole new dimension to the Absa Cape Epic.

In 2021, the Team Bauer-Werner Young Guns married couple Laura and Sebastian Stark found the perfect balance and harmony between strengths and weaknesses – both mental and physical – and led from the slopes of Table Mountain National park to Val de Vie to win the category. “We’re very happy to win the jersey,” Laura said after the finish. “It wasn’t the plan to keep the jersey from start to finish but it worked out well. Even on the final stage we said: ‘We’re not going to chill, we’re going to do what we’ve done every stage.’ That worked out really well for us.”

The Starks will not be back in 2022 to defend their title, meaning that the Mixed category title is up for grabs and there’s a team that competed in the category before that has their sites set on victory.

“I would be lying to myself if I thought mixed racing would be any easier than in the women's category,” says Jennie Stenerhag, who is tackling the 2022 event alongside fiancé, Craig Gerber. Stenerhag has a long and illustrious Absa Cape Epic career in the women’s category behind her, including winning in 2017 with Esther Süss.

“I would be lying to myself if I thought mixed racing would be any easier than in the women's category,” 

Stenerhag will retire from professional cycling at the end of 2022. “I feel content with what I have done and achieved as a cyclist and I am looking forward to take on the next challenges I have set out for myself after this year,” she says.

“I still felt that I wanted to do the Absa Cape Epic this year, especially since the route is so close to Stellenbosch this time and I can’t think of a better partner than my fiancé Craig.”

According to Stenerhag racing the Absa Cape Epic would normally be a given as it is in her adopted ‘backyard,’ but this year is different. “We are spending the SA summer / European winter in Sweden, so this year Craig and I felt that we wanted to plan a holiday in SA and what better to do on a ‘holiday’ than riding the Absa Cape Epic together as a mixed team!?”

It is not an untested racing combination however and the pair started the 2013 Absa Cape Epic together as a mixed team and were on the podium at the Prologue, but unfortunately Gerber fell ill and was forced to withdraw, leaving Stenerhag to finish as a solo rider. “We have done a few stage other races together back when I started mountain biking, including the Cape Pioneer Trek and Joburg2C.”

We are in a racing category so we will race as hard as we can and try to do our best. 


The green jersey symbolises balance and harmony, creating equilibrium between the head and the heart in the face of adversity.

“I can honestly say that there is no one I know better on the bike than Craig, since we have basically done 90% of all our training together in the past 11 years!” Stenerhag says, adding that their aim is to enjoy the trails and have fun doing the event together, but the pro in her won’t ease off just yet. “We are in a racing category so we will race as hard as we can and try to do our best. We don't really know what to expect since most of our training has been indoors here in Europe and on icy, snowy roads. We have not seen a singletrack in three months! But we know the Absa Cape Epic and this knowledge ensures we won’t be approaching it casually.”

The 2022 Absa Cape Epic takes place from 20-27 March. See how the race for dark green unfolds and find out more here.

10 years of Mixed category Winners

2021:Bauer-Werner Young Guns:

Laura and Sebastian Stark

2019: TBR Werner:

Laura and Sebastian Stark

2018:Journey by Junto:

Nicky Giliomee and Brennan Anderson

2017: SCOTT-SRAM Nextlevel:

Jenny Rissveds and Thomas Frischknecht

2016:Open - Kappius Components:

Jean-Francois Bossler and Fanny Bourdon


Peter Vessel and Ivonne Kraft


Yannick Lincoln and Aureli Halbwachs


Erik Kleinhans and Ariane Lüthi

2012:Contego 28E:

Erik Kleinhans and Ariane Lüthi

2011:Wheeler BiXS:

Barti Bucher and Esther Süss