The South African Para-cycling track team have performed exceptionally well in their time trial events on Sunday, the first day of the Oceania Championships being held in Invercargill, New Zealand (20 November).
Jaco Nel, riding in the C2 category, put on a stellar performance and claimed gold in the 1000m Men’s Time Trial race in 1:19.383, edging out New Zealander Stephen Hills by just under 3-seconds and leaving Australian Glen Jarvis to settle for the bronze.
Not far behind in terms of well-deserved accolades were riders Stephan Herholdt and Roxy Burns, who finished second in their C4 class (male, female). Stephan faced exceptionally tough competition in the form of Japan’s Masashi Ishii, who took gold in a time of 1:10.437. Australian Ryan Hughes rounded out the podium. Although Janos Plekker and Juan Wilson rode well, they were not able to finish in the top 3 positions in a closely contested race.
Dane Wilson, who experienced his first opportunity to represent South Africa in the national team, finished a credible third in the very competitive C5 class. Chris Ross (NZL) claimed gold with Australian Michael Gallagher claiming the silver medal.
With the team nerves settled after the first day of the championships, all of the riders are excited about the challenge that day-2 holds for them in their pursuit events.
New South African records for the time trial were established by Jaco Nel (C2), Roxy Burns (C4-women), Dane Wilson (C5) and Stephan Herholdt (C4-men).
Para-cycling Men 1000m Time Trial
1 Masashi ISHII (C4) JPN 1:10.437
2 Stephan HERHOLDT (C4) RSA 1:14.101
3 Ryan HUGHES (C4) AUS 1:14.170
4 Janos PLEKKER (C4) RSA 1:16.456
1 Chris ROSS (C5) NZL 1:10.730
2 Michael GALLAGHER (C5) AUS 1:11.196
3 Dane WILSON (C5) RSA 1:12.832
1 David NICHOLAS (C3) AUS 1:13.113
2 Masaki FUJITA (C3) JPN 1:14.984
3 Nathan SMITH (C3) NZL 1:17.359
4 Juan WILKEN (C3) RSA 1:23.824
1 Jaco NEL (C2) RSA 1:19.383
2 Stephen HILLS (C2) NZL 1:22.223
3 Glen JARVIS (C2) AUS 1:24.302
Para-cycling Women 500m Time Trial
1 Susan POWELL (C4) AUS 40.486
2 Roxy BURNS (C4) RSA 42.981
3 Alexandra Green (C4) AUS 44.596