Entries are now open for the historic Paarl Boxing Day Track Challenge, which takes place for the 122nd time this year in the Faure Street Stadium on the traditional date of 26 December. 

Track cyclists with an international or domestic racing license are permitted to enter and take part in the historic meeting. 

The event attracts South Africa’s top professionals as well as a host of international riders who tackle each other for a share of the R100 000 prize purse in front of a capacity crowd of 5000 spectators at the Faure Street Stadium in Paarl.

Categories that are catered for in the meeting are:

Boys under 11: 500m/800m/1500m

Boys under 13: 500m/800m/1500km

Boys under 15: 1500m/800m/3km

Boys under 17: 800m/1500m/5km

Youth and handicapped ladies: 800m/1500m/3km

Junior, elite and veteran ladies: 800m/1500m

Junior men: 800m/1500m 

Veteran men: 800m/1500m/5km

Elite men: 1500m/ 1 Mile/ Devil/ 10km Points/ Keirin/25Mile

For more information and to enter, go to

The Paarl Boxing Day Track Challenge, presented in association with the Drakenstein Municipality, is the oldest cycling event in the world. The meeting has not skipped a year since its inception in 1897.

“Boxing Day is not only the biggest track cycling event in Africa, it’s also one of the most spectated stadium sporting events on the continent,” said Hectic Promotions director Mauritz Meyer.

“The meeting rests in the care of the Paarl Amateur Cycling and Athletics Club. The club last year approached Hectic Promotions to assume the responsibility of hosting the event. 

“It is an honour for Hectic Promotions to be associated with the meeting. To be appointed as organiser is a prestigious grant indeed,” said Meyer.

Designating a professional event company to assume the hosting responsibility, is a step that the club has been considering for a while now, according to chairman Hein Kroff. “In the professional era of eventing we weren’t convinced that we were enabling the meeting to realise its full potential. 

“Although Boxing Day still attracts a capacity crowd and strong competitors’ base, the media, marketing and sponsorship aspects of the meeting needed to be elevated.

“This agreement is a giant leap for Paarl Boxing day. Hectic Promotions boasts a proven record of accomplishment in presenting cycling events which fulfil the requirements of sponsors and stakeholders. We look forward to start working with them,” he said  

Hectic Promotions fund an array of charity projects and, according to Meyer, they are extending its reach to Paarl through the Paarl Boxing Day Challenge.

“We have identified Huis Mia Paarl as official beneficiary of Paarl Boxing Day. Huis Mia is a temporary safe care facility for new-born babies.” 

Meyer assured that some of the world’s foremost track cyclists will be in Paarl on 26 December this year. “Bringing cycling to the people is the motto of Paarl Boxing Day. Courtesy of the event Paarl has earned the reputation as hotbed of track cycling in South Africa,” said Meyer.

“Our intent, in conjunction with the Drakenstein Municipality and other event partners, is to create a unique and very marketable cycling concept to showcase the City of Paarl.” 

The meeting concludes with the famous 25 Mile Race and the winner of the final event is regarded as the winner of the day. In addition to the generous prize purse, the Minnaar Cup floating trophy, which dates to 1908, is also up for grabs.

Meyer said the 25 Mile Race is really special, “The capacity crowd is left in awe as riders complete 87 laps of the track. Tactics unfold as riders try to gain an advantage during the race, which takes approximately 1 hour to complete.

“It’s scintillating stuff!”

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