There was some nervous energy around the breakfast tables this morning, with 125km looming ahead making day 3 the longest day distance wise of the entire JoBerg2c. And to make things a little worse, it was freezing in Reitz, proper freezing. Another mass start again saw us following a huge Massey Ferguson tractor for a 8km’s of neutral riding until the racing started. I had made a conscious decision to start slower and have a fairly chilled day.
Today’s 95km saw us riding through some incredible parts of the Free State, parts that you would never see unless you ride this race. Long district roads separated by some great single track was the order of the day. A chilly mass start saw us following a huge Massey Ferguson tractor for a couple kilometers until the racing started. It was fast and frantic, not even two cows stampeding across the road could slow the bunch down.
So, when somebody tells you that day 1 of Joberg2C is easy because its neatral and a warm up day, smack them. They are lieing. Its 115km, thats far on a mountain bike in anybodies books. Luckily we had a tail wind for most of the way which help me home in a time of 4hr36m, about 10 min behind the front couple teams, who were taking it easy.
Last year’s surprise winners Neil MacDonald and Waylon Woolcock will be out to silence their critics at the Old Mutual joBerg2c mountain bike race, which starts at Heidelberg in Gauteng on Friday.
The former road cyclists are determined to prove that their victory in the second edition of South Africa’s longest paired stage race was no flash in the pan.
This year, the Team RE-CM riders will be up against a formidable field that includes the likes of Kevin Evans and David George (Nedbank 360Life), Brandon Stewart and Jacques Rossouw (FedGroup Itec-Connect) as well as Gawie Combrinck and Nico Bell (Transact).
Exciting young downhiller Tiaan Odendaal will lead the charge as KZN’s mountain biking community continues the launch of enduro racing in the country at this weekend’s CSA KZN All Africa MTB Challenge at Cascades MTB park in Pietermaritzburg.
Odendaal, who finished second behind renowned cross-country rider Philip Buys at the race format’s ‘KZN debut’ last weekend at the Mr Price Karkloof Classic MTB Festival, will hope to go one better in his hometown on Saturday morning.
With Kevin Evans and David George opting to compete in the Joburg2C mountain bike tour rather than the MTN Clarens, Max Knox might just be the new overall leader in the MTN Ultra-marathon series after the MTN Clarens National MTB Ultra taking place on Saturday, 5 May 2012.
Pretoria welcomed mountain bikers from across the country at the weekend for the second round of the CSA-MTB National Series, with Philip Buys and Amy McDougall taking the cross-country Men and Women’s titles respectively on Saturday 14 April, and junior Tiaan Odendaal claiming the Downhill victory on Sunday 15 April 2012.
Cycling South Africa is delighted to welcome Red Bull as an official partner to the South African Mountain Bike National Series for 2012.
Mike Bradley, National Director of Mountain Biking, is super excited about the sponsorship and welcomes Red Bull to the National scene: “Cross-country (XCO) and especially Downhill racing, are the more extreme and technical aspects of the sport, as was witnessed at this year’s opening round of the UCI MTB World Cup in Pietermaritzburg.”
Red Bull will be supporting the remaining 3 events in the series as well as the SA XCO and DHI Championships to be held at Mankele MTB Park (in Mpumalanga) in July.