Mbombela – The action in Mbombela at the 2015 Pennypinchers South African Road, Time Trial and Para-cycling Championships concluded on Sunday with a handful of Road Races but the event was a resounding success from an organisers to a Cycling South Africa point of view as the riders gear up for the next part of their season.
The week started with a number of Para-cycling events, which were well subscribed and hotly contested as places at the upcoming Para-cycling World Championships were up for grabs to the riders that ended at the front end of the field.
The final day’s action saw a couple veteran’s categories take to the entertaining yet challenging course in Mbombela and with the continued hot weather the riders had to work hard throughout their races.
In the veteran men’s 30-34 category it was a bunch sprint that decided the race and with eight riders fighting it out at the sharp end of the field it was Franco Ferreira who claimed the national champions title ahead of Matthys Koekemoer, Jaco Cronje and five other riders that made up the bunch.
The men’s 35-39 age category was just as early fought out and it was eventually won by Deno van Heerden who snatched the win by a second from Jacques van Staaden in second and Carl Lotter who rounded out the podium places.
Amongst the other veteran men’s races it was Mark Spencer (40-44), Martin van Wyk (45-49), Anton Duvenage (50-54) and Charles Nienaber (55-59) who won the rights to call themselves national champions in their respective age categories.
The ladies veterans also took part in their Road Race with the 30-34 age category being won by Sanet Coetzee and the 35-39 age bracket was won by Desray Sebregts in an end sprint over Bianca Hotlzkampf.
General Manager of Cycling South Africa Mike Bradley was happy with the way the whole event unfolded and understood the challenges that the riders face but he believed that the challenges were good and the event was a success.
“All-in-all I think the event was a success,” Bradley said. “We didn’t have any serious issues and the riders had some challenging courses as well as conditions to deal with throughout the week so I think the whole event went off well.”
The Lowveld has become a hotbed of cycling activity and Bradley was quick to point out that it is becoming quite a sought-after area for riders to go to and they were well equipped to handle a national championships.
“It is a really popular venue for riders to go and train and we are starting to see more and more teams head up there for camps and the like.
“It is a safe area to ride in which makes it popular and even though it was hot during the week the riders enjoy riding up there,” he added.
The national jersey is a much prized possession for a rider and having our top international competitors returning to take part in the national championships is an testament to the importance of the jersey but also the quality of the field.
“Having all of the guys that ride overseas back for the national championships is great.
“With riders like Daryl (Impey), Jacques (Janse van Rensburg), Ashleigh (Moolman-Pasio) and a number of others returning to the national champs shows the pride they take in wearing their national colours overseas in the high-profile tour races that they will be heading to,” Bradley explained.
A highlight for a number of the lady riders was the way in which the chasing bunch in the Road Race did not let eventual champion Ashleigh Moolman Pasio walk away with the title and they pushed and made her work for the win. Bradley feels that this result it hugely encouraging for female cycling in South Africa.
“The Elite Women’s Road Race just showed how much effort the local ladies have been putting in over the recent past.
“The field in the ladies race has grown from 16 to 33 riders and the rest of the ladies made it as tricky as possible for Ashleigh which is great for ladies riding,” he mentioned optimistically.
For more information, visit http://www.cyclingsa.com/2015-sa-road-champs
SUMMARY OF RESULTS - 2015 PENNYPINCHERS SOUTH AFRICAN ROAD, TIME TRIAL AND PARA-CYCLING CHAMPIONSHIPS - DAY SIX
Veteran Men 30-34
1. Franco Ferreira 03:19:07
2. Matthys Koekemoer 03:19:07
3. Jaco Cronje 03:19:08
4. Neil Timm 03:19:08
5. Jacques Greeff 03:19:08
Veteran Men 35-39
1. Deno van Heerden 03:22:24
2. Jacques van Staden 03:22:25
3. Carl Lotter 03:22:25
4. Jaco Ferreira 03:22:25
5. Trevor Rowe 03:22:25
Veteran Men 40-44
1. Mark Spencer 02:33:49
2. Matthys van Jaarsveld 02:33:58
3. Jacques Fullard 02:34:04
4. Jac Louis van Wyk 02:34:05
5. Rynard van Hoven 02:34:22
Veteran Men 45-49
1. Martin van Wyk 02:36:11
2. Samuel de Swardt 02:36:11
3. Bryan Cusack 02:36:11
4. Stefano Madies 02:36:12
5. Andrew Westaway 02:36:16
Veteran Men 50-54
1. Anton Duvenage 02:37:21
2. Gary Beneke 02:37:21
3. Paul Kraus 02:37:22
4. Hendrik Olivier 02:37:23
5. Mark Langman 02:37:26
Veteran Men 55-59
1. Charles Nienaber 02:50:40
2. Dirk Smit 02:50:41
3. George van Rooyen 02:51:02
4. Klaus Wiemann 02:51:03
5. Phillip Janse van Rensburg 02:52:12
Veteran Women 30-34
1. Sanet Coetzee 03:09:12
2. Neille Vorster 03:09:15
3. Meghan Brinkley 03:10:10
Veteran Women 35-39
1. Desray Sebregts 03:09:11
2. Bianca Holtzkampf 03:09:12
3. Nicolene Naude 03:09:12
4. Suzan Bowman 03:09:38
5. Amanda Blignaut 03:27:20