Over-70 cyclists gear up for MTB race

2014-07-24 00:00

ESTON — Seven septuagenarians have entered the Illovo Eston Mountain Bike Challenge based at the Eston Club eager to prove that they can hold their own in the field of over 2 500 riders expected at the popular mountain biking event on August 3.

With entries set to close at midnight on July 30, excited riders from throughout KwaZulu-Natal are hurriedly adding their names to mix, including six 70-years-old and older cycling crusaders.

Dave Bridges from Crestholme in Waterfall is currently the second oldest person to have submitted their entry for this year’s event. After two enjoyable attempts at the 18 km Tala/aQuellé Family Ride, the 72-year-old is looking forward to his maiden 40 km aQuellé Half Marathon journey this year.

“The 18 km is very family friendly, but this year I decided I was going try something a bit more challenging and I’m looking forward to taking part in the 40 km race for the first time,” ­explained Bridges.

Albeit a little off his best form currently, Bridges is relishing a return to the region where he previously spent many years.

Eighty-year-old Derek Stringer is another of the over-70 class who is set to tackle this year’s Eston, one of only a few mountain biking events Stringer competes in religiously.

Joy Schaffers (71), Stringer’s fellow Brighton Beach pensioners’ cycling group member, is the oldest female entry as it stands and the pair are just two of a handful of the group readying themselves for the Eston challenge.

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