Georgenau School in Wartburg, KwaZulu-Natal, played host to the Umgungunglovu District Race on Saturday 15 November 2014. The enthusiastic Principal, Mr. Diko, and teachers Mandla Thusini and Ms Dlamini, expressed great excitement in holding the popular race on school property.
Seventy-five eager learners attended the event and participated in the cycle races that were set up on the school playing field, with the course marked out using cones. KZN Cycling Development Officer, Tyrone Johns, and his dedicated team added a vital element to the day’s proceedings by including a learning programme. Learners that were not 100% confident with their riding abilities spent time with some of the helpers to learn to ride without experiencing the pressure of racing. This was a big success, keeping the kids busy for most of the day.
The morning started with practice where everyone had the opportunity to get used to the BMX Bikes and the short course. Learners were then categorised into ages according to the number of participants, which resulted in Girls Junior, Girls Senior, Boys 10-and-under, Boys 11-13, Boys 14-16 and Boys 16+ groups being created.
Amanda Gwala was the stand out girl, winning all her heats and the final with ease with Nokwanda Nkosi in second and Nothamelo Chamane in third. In the Boys 10 and Under it was Siphosethu Zakwe with the win closely followed by Banele Mhlongo and Menzi Zakwe in third. The Boys 11-13 saw Siyabonga Zondi, Sifiso Sibiya and Seluleko Ngobo take the podium. In the competitive age category Boys 14-16, the boys changed positions and no one really dominated the day, but in the final it was Sifiso Madondo followed in by Mazwi Sikhakhane and Lwazi Faye. Then it was the big boys turn in the fastest race of the day. Bongani Nuss put in a flawless performance winning all his heats, his Semi Final and Final and really made the race day his own. Lindokuhle Nkosi finished second with Siyathemba Ndlovu third.
“I was very encouraged to see some girls taking part as this is an area we usually battle with,” said Johns. “They took part and showed some real talent. The race day was so well received and after every event we are asked when we are coming back,” said Johns. “I do think that we will have to start increasing the amount of events we hold in the future but this is just the start and it is gaining huge momentum.”
The Development Race Day Series 2014 is supported by the KwaZulu-Natal Department of Sports and Recreation, Cycling South Africa and Cycling KZN. A huge thank you goes to Dr. Clive Coetzee from KwaZulu-Natal Provincial Treasury, Alec Lenferna from Real Events Management and Reneesha Nath from KwaZulu-Natal Sports and Recreation for joining on the day. Without their support, none of this would be possible. Thank you to Giba Gorge Mountain Bike Park for the use of your vehicle in transporting the bicycles and equipment.
For further information about the Development Series Race Day, please contact KZN Cycling Development Officer, Tyrone Johns, on 083 606 6086.