National para-cycling heroes kicked off day four of the SA National Road Championships in Wellington on the morning of 10 February 2017.
Pieter “Supapiet” du Preez once again swept up his second National gold medal for the championship in the H1 category. “It went well,” he said. “I’m glad they changed the start time to a little bit earlier so we had incredible weather,” he added.
Du Preez mentioned that the course was a tough one, but fun and enjoyable, and that he had a good time out there. “I was also happy with how good my form is because I have been training really hard, and I really peaked entirely for this,” he added.
Du Preez mentioned that the 2016 and 2017 courses were worlds apart. “This year is much hotter, but also, the time trial actually dropped 100 metres in altitude from start to finish last year. So even though there were a few hills, it was a very fast Time Trial. On this course, your altitude gain was 170 metres so it’s a tough course. You have to work the whole time as well. The downhills are not that steep so you can never relax. You have to work hard to get down, and then again to get up.
He thanked Cycling South Africa, and all of the locals and volunteers. “Thank you to everyone for making it such an amazing race,” he added. “Thanks also to guys like Johnny Koen, who take the silent moments and really fill them up for us,” he laughed.
He also mentioned that he is looking forward to the year, and cannot wait to have a World Championships in August on home soil. Du Preez and his wife Illse are also anticipating one of the most special moments of 2017 – the birth of their first child in the not too distance future.
The Women’s T1 Road Race Championship gold medal was claimed by Toni Mould – who once again stole the hearts of those around her with her constant cheers of enthusiasm for her fellow cyclists.
Goldy Fuchs did the double as he grabbed the Men’s T2 Road Race gold medal after winning the Time Trial in his category on Tuesday.
Juan Odendaal looked smashing on the Men’s C3 Podium in his National Jersey after winning the Road Race in his category, and Phillo Verlaat claimed the first podium spot in the Men’s C2 event.
“Today was very good but the heat, wow,” said Verlaat. “For the first three laps I tried to make it interesting but on the fourth, my legs just gave up,” he added.
Verlaat said that overall he was happy with his race, despite the heat, and was looking forward to working towards the World Championships in Pietermaritzburg later this year.
Gysie van der Niet smashed his Men’s H4 Road Race in a time one hour, 27 minutes and 40.029 seconds. Finishing behind Van der Niet was Patrick Rasedimo in second place, and the bronze medal went to Barend Coetzee, who suffered a great deal out on the course from the heat, but said he felt ready to do another lap after the prize-giving ceremony.
Palesa Manaleng looked great in Gold after the Women’s H3 Road Race. “It went okay. I didn’t get to do the Time Trial so I didn’t get to do the route until today,” she said. The first level she thought was okay, until she hit the first up hill. “By the time I got to the top I was thinking ‘that’s it, that’s me, I’m done’,” she added.
Manaleng said that it was an interesting route. “I enjoyed it. I think if I could do it again I’d do it again - If we start at 5am maybe. I think I almost melted on the road,” she laughed.
Championship commentator Johnny Koen managed to round up the crowds in the morning to sing a very well-deserved Happy Birthday to newly appointed Cycling South Africa’s Para-cycling Commission Director, Estelle van der Merwe. Van der Merwe, a retired cyclist and C5 para-cyclist herself, could not have been prouder of what the team accomplished out there on the day.
Follow the racing action live by live timing on the Mobii APP (http://www.mobii.com/app) available on Android and iOS devices in the relevant APP stores. Search for “Mobii Race Results”.
Click here to view your finish line photo and results on Mobii: http://mobii.com/sarc2017/
To watch the Elite Women’s road race on Saturday and the Elite Men’s road race on Sunday, for more information about the SA National Road Champs and full race results, click here: https://www.cyclingsa.com/2017-sa-road-champs/
You can also watch the Elite road races here:
SUMMARY OF RESULTS FROM SA NATIONAL ROAD CHAMPS - DAY 4 – 10 February 2017
ROAD RACE (Morning session)
1.Pieter du Preez 1:27:29.853
1.Gysie van der Niet 1:27:40.029
2.Patrick Rasedimo 2:08:43.737
3.Barend Coetzee 2:23:23.753
1.Palesa Manaleng 2:00:56.475
1.Goldy Fuchs 00:52:19.863
1.Toni Mould 00:57:29.611
1.Phillo Verlaat 1:49:22.310
1.Juan Odendaal 1:43:31.396
2.Johan Voges 02:00:21.207
1.Attie Botha 2:07:40.212
1.Gavin Cowden 1:40:40.362