Garmin renews sponsorship with professional Mountain Biker, Yolandi du Toit

Garmin Southern Africa (Pty) Ltd., are proud to be resigning Yolandi du Toit, a professional Mountain Bikers as a Garmin Ambassador for the second year running. Yolandi had a successful year last year and is currently ranked third in the premier mountain bike series, the Ashburton series.

“Garmin are extremely proud to continue the partnership with such an inspiring athlete like Yolandi. She is a great cyclist, brand ambassador and person. We have found a partner that shares our values and we look forward to supporting each other during the course of the year” says Walter Mech, Managing Director of Sub-Saharan Africa.

Yolandi will be riding in her own design of Garmin branded kit as she did in previous seasons and will train with the best equipment that Garmin has to offer. “The Edge 1000 combines the essential features cyclists have come to love from the current Edge range, but adds exciting new features like a large 3” high-resolution colour touch screen display, built in power training and challenging segment features that will take cyclists training to the next level,” said Marc Bainbridge, Garmin Southern Africa Fitness Product Manager. The Edge 1000 can be paired with the Garmin Virb Elite, a GPS enabled Action Camera so Yolandi can remotely control her action from her Edge. She will also be able to pair her Virb Elite with her heart rate monitor to record her speed, distance, route, tracks and altitude which will be embedded in the video when replayed. The Vector power meter pedals will also assist Yolandi in her training where the measuring tools will record the power output from each pedal

To keep updated on Yolandi’s journey, connect with her via twitter @Yolandi_duToit

We caught up with Yolandi and this is what she has to say.

1.     You have just completed your first ride for the year, what race was it and how did it go? Tell us about it?

It was the first leg in the USN Cup series. I’m always quite nervous for the first race of the season as you don’t really know where your fitness is compared to the competition. During the season you race on a weekly basis and can track your progress. I am very pleased with how the race went. I won the race and obviously couldn’t have asked for a better start to the season.

2.     This was the first race where you have worn your new race kit. What was the reaction?

For me the design of cycling kit is very important as it is not only your sponsor’s billboard, but also the personal image you present to the public and your competitors. Everyone I spoke to commented on my kit. They love the new design, especially the blue.

3.     What inspired the changes you made in the design?

The corporate colors of Garmin as well as the cheerful and feminine feel of Garmin were both big inspiration.

4.     What are your cycling goals for 2015?

To medal at SA Marathon Champs, getting selected to compete at the Marathon World Championships, a top 3 placing in both Tankwa Trek 3 day stage race and in the Ashburton mountain bike series.

 5.       You have a busy year ahead with races planned throughout, how are you going to approach this year differently compared to last year? 

I have a lot of races planned for this year and I really want to be consistent. My training is much more focused and specific this year compared to last year. Knowing your race program in advance also allows one to plan much better and take a more structure approach.

6.     What was the biggest lesson you learnt in 2014?

Hard work and persistence pays off. If you really want something and you work hard at it, you will be successful or at the very least learn a valuable lesson that will guide you in the future.

7.     What was the highlight of 2014?

The highlight of 2014 was definitely my partnership with Garmin. It came about very unexpectedly and has blossomed into a very special relationship. They’ve supported all my goals and shared in my successes and disappointments.

The GTribe ladies series has been a big part of our association and has offered me the opportunity to work more closely with the Garmin Team making me feel like a valuable contributor to their goals. To start a project like that from scratch and see it grow throughout the year is very rewarding. The Series is still growing and I’m very excited to see where it’s to take us in 2015.

8.       Are there any races that you have added onto the calendar which will be a first for you, or ones which you didn’t’ compete in last year?

The 3 day Berg and Bush mountain bike stage race and the 7 day Cape Pioneer mountain bike stage race unfortunately take place at the same time. For the last 2 years I’ve chosen the latter but this year my head is leaning towards competing at Berg and Bush.

9.       What’s your favourite Garmin device and why?

Tough question, as I enjoy using different Garmin devices for different applications. What I can say is that I use the Edge 1000 and the Vector’s the most. By using these two products in combination I can really get the most out of my training and myself.

10.   Which Garmin product would you not cycle without?

Definitely my Edge 1000

11.   Tell us more about the Edge 1000, as a professional MTB cyclist what feature benefits you the most?

On good days I enjoy looking at the data fields which display all the different power metrics. On days that I just want to have fun on my mountain bike I’ll map out a course on Garmin Connect (which is Garmin’s online training platform) and go and explore a new area.

12.      How do the Garmin Vector pedals contribute towards your training?

Power is an objective measure of your cycling performance on any given day, independent of environmental conditions or how you feel. Using a power meter like Vector allows me to gauge my training intensity with precision and perform power-based training.

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