South Coast MTB riders shine
SCOTTBURGH — South Coast riders Evan van der Spuy (Varsity College) and Hayley Smith (Bell Equipment) flew the local flag high, claiming victory in the men’s and women’s events at the popular Magma Security Scottburgh MTB Classic.
On a course described as tough and challenging, yet equally enjoyable, the two both withstood strong attacks from their rivals in the early stages of the race to fight back and take the wins in convincing fashion.
Van der Spuy was under constant attack from Lee Penderis and Mathew Goetsch (Team Jeep) throughout the race, losing time on the King of the Mountain Climbs, but fought his way back in the single-track downhill sections.
The three riders dominated the field from early on, with large gaps to the next riders on the course. The race remained a tight contest until the final climb where Van der Spuy managed to open up a gap, with Penderis and Goetsch struggling after their early efforts, and held on across the beach to take the win.
“On the first hill, myself, Lee and Mat got away, put down the hammer and managed to open a gap on the other guys. We worked together until the King of the Mountains, where Lee and Mat attacked me,” said Van der Spuy.
“After that, there was some beautiful flowing single track through which I was able to get back to Lee and Mat,” he said. “I then managed to get a gap on the last hill and stay away.”
The women’s race was also a tightly contested affair, with Hayley Smith and Jackie Church getting an early gap on the field, with Church riding hard in the early stages on the climbs. Unfortunately, a puncture at 28 km allowed Smith to close the gap and ride away for a convincing victory ahead of Nataschka Mowat, who had been chasing the two leaders from early on.
Church managed to repair the puncture and get going once again, holding on to third place to round out the podium.
Smith had high praise for the course, describing the single track as “fast and quick, and very enjoyable”. However, he also said that “the soft sand made it very tricky”.
In the 28 km event, it was another South Coast rider, 12-year-old Cale Lindecke, who rode away from the entire field to take a convincing win against many older and more experienced riders.
There was nothing the others could do to keep the talented 12-year-old at bay, as he broke away early in the race and stayed out front, navigating the tough course and tricky river crossing onto the beach at the finish well ahead of the other riders.
Many riders crossing the finish line had high praise for the course, with its engaging single track and spectacular views, praising event organiser Flavio Scarpa for the tough but enjoyable course.
Many crossed the finish line with a smile on their faces, despite the challenging route that tested them on all levels, enjoying the opportunity to cool off in the ocean after a hard ride.
MAGMA SECURITY SCOTTBURGH MTB RACE RESULTS SUMMARY
45 KM Men: 1. Evan van der Spuy, 2. Lee Penderis, 3. Matthew Goetsch, 4. Carl Calverley, 5. Blake Gutzeit, 6. Siyabonga Njiva, 7. Shaun Peschl, 8. Darryn Purtell, 9. Garth Schonewolf, 10. Gregg McDonnagh.
45 KM Women: 1. Hayley Smith, 2. Natachka Mowat, 3. Jackie Church
28 KM: 1. Cale Lindecke, 2. Heinrich Odendaal, 3. Derek Thomas.