ROAG Series’ last race this weekend

2012-11-17 00:00

MOUNTAIN BIKING

WITH eight events completed in the inaugural ROAG Series, this weekend’s focus will be on Mountain Splendour Mania — the ninth and final race in the series.

The skill and talent of young riders developed as each race progressed, with top riders revelling in the competitiveness and camaraderie that epitomises the series.

This weekend’s races could determine the winner in each category, as well as the sought after second and third positions.

Business manager of ROAG, Nicole Talbot, said the organisers have been blown away by the positive response the series has generated from mountain bikers at large.

“We’re really pleased with the positive feedback we have received from the riders who participated in the series, most of whom have indicated that they will definitely do it again next year,” he said.

The Complimed Mountain Splendour Mania takes place from the Mountain Splendour Eco-Resort, which will be the start and finish venue for all of the races over the weekend. With the 15 km MTB Night Race having taken place last evening, today offers a Cross-Country lap race with a Fun Family Event incorporating a five kilometre walk/run/ride for the whole family.

Tomorrow sees the traditional 40 km, 20 km and 10 km MTB races.

There is a slight change from last year’s route and the 40 km and 20 km Intermediate will see riders spend most of their time in the magnificent neighbouring Sappi forests and adjacent farm lands, which will be a mixture of district roads, single and jeep tracks.

The 10 km Family Ride is confined to Mountain Splendour’s property.

The series will culminate at the ROAG Series Celebration Dinner on December 1 at Giba Gorge MTB Park, where overall leaders in the men’s and women’s category, Andrew Hill and Natalie Bergstrom, will each be presented with R20 000 apiece.

All other category winners and runners-up will be rewarded, too.

Sunday, November 25 sees the ever popular Karkloof Trail Blazer taking place on some of the best trails in the country, riding from the Kar­kloof Country Club with 40 km, 20 km and 10 km options available.

The unique Karkloof Trailblazer is based on a simple process: arrive and then ride/run as much single track as possible.

Karkloof is one of the best-known riding venues in SA, and provides riders (and now trail runners as well) with an awesome opportunity to test their skills on a variety of skill-based courses.

The Trailblazer offers a variety of options, so if single track is not your idea of fun just yet, don’t be scared — there is a 20 km simple yet enjoyable ride on jeep tracks and forestry roads.

The event focuses on riding and aims to keep the admin simple with no compulsory timing, no race packs, no batching. Arrive and set off during the stipulated time period and enjoy your day on the bike or with your trail shoes. Entries on www.roag.co.za and further info on www.karkloofmtb.co.za

RIDE OR RUN

The Dube Dirt Challenge is KZN’s last MTB and Trail Running event for the year and takes place on December 16 with a 20 km or 45 km route. There will be a free Kiddies Village and a free Toddler 1500 m Tour around Dube City.

The routes are fast flowing and will consist of jeep tracks, district roads and sugar cane paths. The 45 km MTB race starts at 7:30 am, with the 20 km race starting at 7:50 am.

Either a seven kilometre or 15 km trail run is also on offer, running on jeep tracks, district roads, sugar cane paths and some single track.

The 15 km Trail Run starts at 6 am, with the seven kilometre race starting at 6:20 am.

Enter through www.roag.co.za and the first 200 Entries (for both the MTB and Trail Runs) get a limited edition race T-shirt. More information on www.dirtchallenge.com

CYCLING FOR A CAUSE

Arran Brown (MTN Qhubeka) and Anriette Schoeman (Mecer), two of South Africa’s most prolific sprinters, stormed to victory in the final of the Engen Dynamic Cycle Challenge road racing series in Durban last Sunday.

The 97-km race was held at the Moses Mabhida stadium in hot and windy conditions.

The Elite men’s race finished with a big bunch sprint after numerous attacks by Team Bonitas and Tasol GT proved unsuccessful. Brown, SA’s top sprinter, finished ahead of danger man Tyler Day (Bonitas) and David Maree (Tasol-GT).

The women’s race saw the visiting professionals beat the locals when three women broke away after 30 km of racing. Port Elizabeth favourite Anriette Schoeman, team-mate Cashandra Slingerland and Charlotte van der Merwe (MTN Qhubeka) then worked together until Schoeman rode away from her breakaway companions and time-trialled to a solo victory, while Charlotte van der Merwe outsprinted Slingerland for second place.

More than 1 500 riders lined up at the start of the final Durban leg and — together with two previous races in Wellington and Port Elizabeth — helped to raise close to R150 000 for the Red Cross Children’s Hospital Trust Burns Unit in Cape Town.

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