Madibaz cyclists take silver at student champs

2015-07-08 06:01
The Bestmed-Shukuma Madibaz cycling team took the runner-up spot in the team classification at this year’s University Sport SA championship hosted by Maties. Photo:SUPPLIED

The Bestmed-Shukuma Madibaz cycling team took the runner-up spot in the team classification at this year’s University Sport SA championship hosted by Maties. Photo:SUPPLIED

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A DETERMINED Bestmed-Shukuma Madibaz cycling team held many of the larger squads at bay to take the silver medal in the team classification at the University Sport South Africa competition in Stellenbosch last week.

Hosts Maties claimed the overall victory and the University of Cape Town took third place on the podium.

Madibaz team captain Marinus Prinsloo and teammate Christian van Aardt did NMMU proud with their selection to the national squad for the world student games.

Despite being the 2014 titleholders, the NMMU riders were at a numerical disadvantage from the start of the three-day road tour.

“We went into the tour as defending champions and never would have thought that we would get the results we did with only four riders compared to the other universities who had up to seven,” said Prinsloo, whose young team also included Matthew Hayter, Van Aardt and Shane Kemp.

The tour kicked off with a 70km road stage on the Lady Loch circuit in Wellington.

The Madibaz were looking good until the third lap, when Van Aardt crashed heavily as he crossed the line at the first sprint prime.

“It was at this point that I once again realised why I love student champs so much, as the entire bunch then sat up and waited for Christiaan to return,” said Prinsloo.

The NMMU team recovered well to go into the afternoon’s individual time-trial in first place in the team classification.

“The guys showed guts as the entire team rode brilliant times despite our smaller team,” Prinsloo said.

Unfortunately, the Madibaz slipped into second after stage two, as the 120km queen stage loomed ahead the following day.

Prinsloo said day three proved to be even tougher on the NMMU camp with the riders feeling physically drained from the two previous days of hard racing

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