By: Sarah Bonner
Ashleigh Moolman-Pasio celebrated a double victory this past week at African Continental Championships in Ougadougou, Burkina Faso. Moolman-Pasio showed her prowess in both the road and individual time trial disciplines winning the sprint from a breakaway in the road race and the timetrial by 43 seconds.
Victory wasn’t without it’s challenges, however, as only five of the 21 bicycles sent arrived with Team South Africa. With flights arriving only every second day, riders were left without equipment and forced to abandon some events. “I had both, my time trial and road bike, so I was one of the fortunate ones,” Moolman-Pasio stated, sounding relieved all over again.
Nico Pfitzenmaier is an interesting fellow. This is confirmed when I meet with the lean German rider in the Robert Daniel gazebo after stage 2 of the 2012 ABSA Cape Epic. While most riders are downing protein shakes and refueling with sports nutrition products, Pfitzenmaier is eating a meal resembling raw vegetables and a form of rice, which he later explains is a highly nutritious seed.
Crank met the Racing 29ers at this years ABSA Cape Epic which will long be remembered for its extreme weather. Searing heat in the opening few days was replaced by wet and near freezing conditions into Grabouw, with hypothermia not uncommon, even amongst the most seasoned of participants.
Apart from being the winner of the inaugural Ironman South Africa, Petr Vabrousek can lay claim to the title of “most frequent” competitor, racing up to three times a week. Although he races approximately fourteen Ironman distance races a year, Vabrousek always puts his young family first.
Endurance sports events are always full of surprises and the Totalsports Challenge 2012 was no different. With Dan Hugo the perennial favorite, most expected him to cruise to an easy victory as in years past.
But a plucky dairy farmer from the Eastern Cape had other ideas.
Stuart Marais threw caution to the wind, making this year’s Challenge a “down to the wire” duel, finishing only five minutes behind the better known Hugo, both athletes shattering the previous record by a long way.
“I don’t follow a set training schedule. I try to dictate my training by opposites,” says Jonas Colting, two-time Ultraman champion and one of the world’s top long-distance triathletes.
A native of Sweden, Colting is perhaps one of the most interesting and resourceful professional triathletes around, having developed a successful ‘side industry’ around his athletic career.
Professional athlete, writer, coach and motivational speaker all make up Colting’s daily lifestyle and he was kind enough to answer our questions in between these commitments.
“Steve Hofmeyer!” exclaims Conrad Stoltz with a grin after opening up a copy of Alexander Parker’s book, “50 People Who Stuffed Up South Africa”.
“Zapiro is my favourite satirist” he explains, noting the hilarious illustrations of the complexities of everyday South Africa found in this amusing read, which I had bought just prior to our meeting at a Knysna coffee shop.
The Caveman, as he is known, had just finished taking part in the Waterfront Rush, a waterborne obstacle course-cum-adventure race with his fiancé and SA Netball captain, Liezel Wium, and was eager to get warm after a dip in the icy waters of the Knysna Waterfront.