De Villiers and Labuschange mixed team to watch out for at Wines2Whales

Yolandè de Villiers and Johan Labuschange will rely on mutual respect and a great sense of humour the weekend of 11 – 13 November 2011 when they defend their mixed team title at the 2011 Contego Wines2Whales MTB Race powered by Maserati.

According to De Villiers, she and Johan make up a strong team as they share the same goal.  “We both give our best in a race.  Johan has a great sense of humour when mountain biking.  He is always ready to tell a joke, which is great at helping me through the tough patches.  Instead of racing against each other, team members need to learn to race together, this is what team racing is all about.  It all boils down to mutual respect, not getting irritated or angry when things don’t go according to plan, but instead working together to make up the time.  The 2010 Wines2Whales route was definitely challenging, especially stage one with all the mud.  The event takes place in one of the most scenic areas in South Africa and features unbelievable single track.  I’m really looking forward to seeing the sea on day three,” says De Villiers.

For Labuschange the 2010 Contego Wines2Whales MTB Race was one of the highlights of the year.  “Yolandè and I don’t beat around the bush and this is probably one of our strongest characteristics. We share faith, trust, tolerance, respect for each other and our fellow participants.  We like to win, but not at all costs.  Caring more about your partner’s best interest than yourself is what makes a winning combination.  Coming from Gauteng I just love the Winelands and am really looking forward to returning this year,” says Labuschange.

De Villiers and Labuschange will face tough competition from youngsters Candice Neethling and James Reid.

Tips for riders competing for the first time:

Yolandè de Villiers

  • Ensure that your bike is in 100% working condition before the race.
  • Enjoy every minute of the race.
  • Take note of the beautiful surroundings in which you have the privilege to ride your mountain bike.

Johan Labuschange

  • Care more about your partner’s well being than your own, this determines 90% of the success as a team.
  • Constantly encourage each other.
  • If you are the stronger member; let your partner set the pace, while you assist where needed (this is sure to make the race more pleasant and/or easier for your partner).
  • If you get tired, you will look for someone to blame – be aware of this fact and direct your mind away from blaming your partner.
  • Never lose your cool with each other; if you do, agree beforehand that what happens in the race stays in the race.
  • Make sure that you check your and your partner’s equipment; this way if a problem does occur it can be written off to fait, not your partner!  Concentrate on fixing it and do not start blaming.