04 Mar 2014 Cape Argus Pick n Pay Momentum Mountain Bike Challenge results
Darren Lill from Team Cannondale Blend held off stiff competition in perfect mountain biking conditions today to clinch the 2014 Cape Argus Pick n Pay Momentum Mountain Bike Challenge title in Stellenbosch. Second place went to Cannondale Blend teammate, Charles Keey, while Kevin Evans from Team Fedgroup Itec claimed the third and final podium spot.
Conquering more than 1 700m of climbing and clocking a time of 02:16:48, Lill said, “It was quite a challenging route for a lot of the cyclists today with many short, steep climbs. The new routes are definitely an improvement and I’m glad the rain held off. I’m very happy with the win.”
In the ladies event, Team RECM rider Ariane Kleinhans clinched a nail biting victory with her closest competition Mariske Strauss from Team Orange Monkey finishing on her wheel in an impressive time of 02:21:43. Jennie Stenerhag from Team CBC secured third place in the female category.
Kleinhans said, “The route today was a totally new experience and I had a lot of fun – it felt like a cross country race! I rode with Mariske for most of the route and went full blast up the climbs. There was quite a bit of wind today, but I stayed patient and sprinted at the last climb before the final single track which was definitely the deciding point of the day.”
In the 38km event, last year’s runner-up, Fabian Paumann took first place in the men’s category, while third place in 2013 Matthew Lombardi came in second this year, followed closely by Martin Zietsman in third.
The women’s category in the 38km event saw Saturday’s 22km route winner Lolita van Aardt take the coveted first place, while Minette Naude and Robyn Harmse took second and third place, respectively.
Over 2 000 riders lined up this morning to tackle the never-ridden-before 38km and 55km routes – with many happy finishers saying they were “some of the best routes” they’d ever ridden. This inaugural year in The Greater Simonsberg Conservancy took fat-tyre enthusiasts on four rider-focused routes across a number of wine estates, including Delvera, Muratie, Delheim and Warwick.
David Bellairs, a Director of the Cape Town Cycle Tour Trust, organisers of the annual event, said the new routes and new location had proven a huge success. “We had a great turnout in this inaugural year at Le Bonheur with entry numbers restricted to 3 000 riders to ensure an improved mountain biking experience. We are extremely pleased that the majority of riders have come away having had a great day of quality riding and the new routes were well-received with many riders commenting on the fabulous single track. 2014 certainly took it to a new level with great riding conditions, superb routes and beautiful surroundings.”
55km Men 1st: Darren Lill (Team Cannondale Blend) – 02:16:48
55km Men 2nd: Charles Keey (Team Cannondale Blend) – 02:17:29
55km Men 3rd: Kevin Evans (Team Fedgroup Itec) – 02:19:06
55km Ladies 1st: Ariane Kleinhans (Team RECM) – 02:21:43
55km Ladies 2nd: Mariske Strauss (Team Orange Monkey) – 02:21:43
55km Ladies 3rd: Jennie Stenerhag (Team CBC) – 02:41:31
38km Men 1st: Fabian Pauman – 01:46:10
38km Men 2nd: Matthew Lombardi – 01:49:56
38km Men 3rd: Martin Zietsman – 01:55:57
38km Ladies 1st: Lolita van Aardt – 02:06:31
38km Ladies 2nd: Minette Naude – 02:10:03
38km Ladies 3rd: Robyn Harmse – 02:15:35