The Tankwha Trek is a stage race in South Africa, and the Ghost Factory Racing team were using it this year as a warm-up for the Cape Epic later in the month. In 2019, Hungarian champion Barbara Benko and her teammate Anne Terpstra won the first two stages of the Tankwha as the only competitors on hardtails, but slipped to third as Benko got ill halfway through the race. This year they were back looking for revenge and to help them get back to the top spot, Ghost commissioned these two custom painted Ghost Lector SF Pro bikes.
Unfortunately, bad luck struck the pair again. Firstly, these custom painted bikes (ironically) got stuck in customs so weren't ready for the race start and Barbara also got sick again. Anne was able to race for the rest of the stages, but she had to start 15 minutes behind the rest of the field each day. She still got the fastest time of the race but it did not count as a winning result as she was not racing with the main field.
In short, these two hardtails will never really get to show us what they could have done, so rather than let them go to waste we thought we'd take a look a bit closer at the key features of these sweet looking rides.
Here's an interesting fact before we get into the details - Ghost Factory Racing weren't actually planning on using these two bikes for the Cape Epic, despite them already having South African livery. Instead, they had another surprise up their sleeve that they now can't show us. We'll make sure to have a good look around their pits when racing resumes to work out exactly what they meant by that.
The rear brake cable is hidden underneath this removable downtube protector, which should make life a bit easier for mechanics than full internal routing. Photos: Zoon Cronje