Needles Set to Spoil the Garlicki, Pottie Showdown

The Western Province downhill mountain bike community is gearing up for their provincial championships, which will be taking place on the popular Contermanskloof downhill track, near Durbanville on the 3rd and 4th December 2011.  This event will crown the 2011 Western Province Downhill Champion across all the categories.

The course has not changed much since the SA Championship event that was held in March this year, although that particular track was closed down, preventing the public from riding the trails.

“This has left the course in pristine condition,” said race organiser Chris Nixon.  “The winter rain has allowed the course to compact nicely and so we are expecting to be running extremely fast times.  We won’t be surprised if we see faster times than we did at the SA Champs!”

The supportive Western Province downhill community always promises a punchy event, and always seems to attract the province’s big names in this hair-raising discipline.  Current SA Downhill Champion and international campaigner for the Giant Factory Off-Road Team Andrew ‘Needles’ Neethling will be participating on his return home.

Clinching a career-best 3rd place finish at the UCI World Cup in Windham (USA) earlier this year, Needles is always up for the challenge when racing in local competition.  “I have been taking a nice break from riding, and training quite a bit – working on some weaknesses, but I am keen to get back on the DH bike,” said Needles.  “I like to just have a good time when racing at home and get back into the swing of things – it is fun to get back to the roots of SA racing really.”

But the ongoing battle between local hotshots Stefan Garlicki and Johan ‘Pottie’ Potgieter, who also spent 5-months competing in Europe, is gaining momentum.  New-kid-on-the-block Garlicki has been putting the pressure on previous SA Champion Pottie, beating him at a recent race in George. “This is the first time that Garlicki has beaten Pottie in competition, so it’s going to be interesting to see how Pottie responds,” exclaimed Nixon.

Nixon is also proud to announce that KTM Bike Industries will be on board as the event’s title sponsor once again.  “We are proud to be associated with the WP Downhill Championship once again as we at KTM, see a growth in the sport of downhill racing. We are excited to witness the competitors showing off their immense skill and speed and wish all the riders the very best,” says Hans de Ridder, marketing manager of KTM Bike Industries in South Africa.

Entrance to spectators is free, and top-notch excitement is almost guaranteed as the riders descend the slope displaying charisma and sheer talent when it comes to bike control and speed.

Click this link to download the entry form.

Registration for participants takes place on Saturday from 9.30am to 3.30pm with practice running from 10.00am to 4.00pm.  An early practice is on Sunday morning from 8.00am to 9.30am, with timed racing starting at 10.00am sharp.  Only the final run will count.

For further info, contact Chris Nixon by email or call 084 777 7802.