Gauteng duo claim pre-Dusi K2 win

2007-11-20 00:00

THE Gauteng duo of Piers Cruikshanks and Jacques Theron made their intentions in the 2007/8 Hansa Powerade Dusi season quite clear on Sunday with their second win in KZN Dusi style races in two weeks.

After taking the lead at Hippo rocks, almost half-way into the race, they stayed ahead to win the Popes Canoe Centre Alan Gardiner Memoral by two minutes from another out-of-province crew, Martin Dreyer and Michael Mbanjwa.

The two top KZN combinations in the race - Deon Bruss with Nick Stubbs and Hank McGregor with Sven Bruss - appeared to be using the trip as a recce rather than a serious race. They were never in serious contetion and placed fourth and fifth respectively, more than five minutes off the pace.

The surprise of the day was the boat in third place, Abbey Miedema and Maritzburg College junior Andrew Birkett. In the low river conditions this light-weight combination quickly established a lead over the heavier men's combinations. Both good runners, they were first over Ngumeni Hill portage and only lost their lead at Hippo Rocks after taking a slower line through the rapid.

Racing from second starting batch at Ibis Point, Hillary Pitchford and Debbie Germiquet took full advantage of Germiquet's long experience of winning on the Dusi course to beating the slightly more fancied crew of Laura Thompson and Ronyn Kime, to the finish at Inanda Dam, by a minute-and-a-half. Kate Frost and Nikky Irvine were a distant third.

The boys' race went to Lance Kime and Peter Brown in 14th place overall and almost 12 minutes ahead of second-placed Matt Gilson and Michael Hay with Eric Zondi and Mkhonzeni Gumede in third place. Again a number of top junior crews elected not to race or withdrew during the race.

Hosts Stella Canoe Club were delighted with biggest entry for several years as 410 paddlers competed. The race, well known for its frequently low river conditions and demanding course, was run in perfect weater conditions with the Umgeni flowing at low 4.5 cumecs.

RESULTS

Overall K2

1. Piers Cruikshanks and Jacques Theron DAB-SOW 2:01:08, 2. Michael Mbanjwa and Martin Dreyer ERK-WHR 2:03:09, 3. Abbey Miedema and Andrew Birkett WHR-MAR 2:03:10, 4. Deon Bruss and Nick Stubbs UMV-MMS 2:06:37. 5. Hank McGregor and Sven Bruss WHR-UMV 2:08:19

Women

1. Hillary Pitchford and Debbie Germiquet NAT-UMZ 2:22:02, 2. Laura Thompson and Robyn Kime NAT-EPW 2:23:34, 3. Kate Frost and Nicky Irvine NAT-KIN 2:39:22, 4. Angelique Mulder and Danica Vorster(U21) KIN-UKN 2:54:31, 5. Emma Gillmer and Angela Kidd KIN 3:13:36

Boys

1. Lance Kime and Peter Brown NAT-MIC 2:20:00, 2. Matt Gilson and Michael Hay MAR 2:32:50, 3. Eric Zondi and Mkhonzeni Gumede UMZ-LEM 2:49:18.

Mixed

1. Abbey Miedema and Andrew Birkett WHR-MAR 2:03:10. 1 SV Brett Frost and Guy Collyer NAT 2:18:21

1 V Eric Hildebrandt and James Tutton KIN 2:13:09

Women Olivia Morford and Jane Oliver KIN 3:15:16

SM 1 Duncan Blaire and Guy Searle UMZ 3:15:28

Women Lorna Holmes and Linda Lodge UMZ-STE 4:01:57

M 1 Rick Whitton and Graeme Pope-Ellis UMZ-KIN 2:15:39

SGM 1 Phillip van Niekerk and Roy Delhove KIN 2:25:00

Women 1 Jane Bain and Linda Attwell NAT 3:31:08

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