Grmay makes history

2015-02-12 00:00

THE riders at the Confederation of ­African Cycling Road Championships were given some respite from the ­weather yesterday for the individual time trials of the elite men and women and it was South African star Ashleigh ­Moolman Pasio who added a continental champs title to her impressive list of achievements. Ethiopian Tsgabu Grmay claimed the elite men’s title.

The men’s individual time trial was just as exciting and with a strong South African contingent the odds would have been in their favour but it was Grmay who was the fastest over the two laps to claim the continental crown.

Pasio went into the race with the team time trial winners medal already in her hands and cruised to victory over fellow South African Heidi Dalton and Aurelie Halbwachs who finished second and third respectively.

“Today was a bit cooler than Monday,” Pasio said. “It was a bit windy and that made the course a bit tougher but it was still a great course and I am glad to get another win for the South African team.”

Going off last is an advantage in the time trial as the rider has an idea of what time they need to achieve in order to win but it got difficult for Pasio as she ­powered her way through the field which meant she was never too sure of where she was going to end up.

“I did feel comfortable throughout so I didn’t feel too much pressure,” she ­added.

The race for second was a tightly fought affair but eventually the silver medal went to Dalton of South Africa and Halbwachs from Mauritius finished ­behind her in third and won the bronze medal.

It was a historic day for the Ethiopian team as Tsgabu Grmay became the first rider from the East African nation to win an elite gold medal at the continental road championships.

“It was a great race for me today and everything went perfectly and my ­preparation coming into the race had been good so I was confident that I could do well,” Grmay said.

“I came into the race knowing that I had a chance of winning it if I rode well and everything went smoothly.”

The U23 men also took to the time trial course yesterday and Merhawi ­Kudus claimed the spoils as he added this title to the team time trial gold that he won with his national team on the first day of the competition.

SUMMARY OF RESULTS

Individual Time Trial

Elite Men

1. Tsgabu Grmay (ETH) 01:03.05.663

2. Daniel Teklehaimanot (ERI) 01:03.22.120

3. Reinhardt Janse van Rensburg (RSA) 01:03.42.676

4. Louis Meintjes (RSA) 01:04.22.099

5. Rafaa Chtioui (TUN) 01:07.03.062

Elite Women

1. Ashleigh Moolman Pasio (RSA) 38.19.925

2. Heidi Dalton (RSA) 40.55.715

3. Aurelie Halbwachs (MRI) 41.04.254

4. Yohana Dawit (ERI) 41.07.942

5. Vera Adrian (NAM) 41.13.080

U23 Men

1. Merhawi Kudus (ERI) 01:05.08.262

2. Valens Ndayisenga (RWA) 01:07.09.981

3. Adil Barbari (ALG) 01:10.02.227

4. Temesgen Buru (ETH) 01:10.18.512

5. Bernaado Erastus (BOT) 01:10.27.200.

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