Third and Final Round

Sunday 15 February saw Bloemendal Wine Estate host the third and final round of the Inter School Eliminator Series for the Western Cape. There was plenty of hype leading up to this event as the riders tried to figure out which sections of the trails we would be using. To riders and spectators amazement, we didn’t use any of the existing trails, instead farm manager Lombard Loubser built a full track for the race including a wine barrel jump and a bridge over the swimming pool! The course offered up plenty of over taking opportunity once the riders had managed to get grip on the gravel driveway of the start sprint.

It was a day filled with a few technicals, plenty of thrills and the occasional spill as riders weren’t willing to give an inch as they bumped handle bars in pursuit of advancing to the finals, with more energy drawn from the enthusiasm of family members and team mates cheering them on from the side lines as they flew around the course.

Week on week, our numbers in ladies slowly grew and they offered up exceptional entertainment as they charged around the course chasing the top step of the podium. Heat one winner Jessi Nixon fell victim to a technical as she snapped her chain in the second heat leaving the door wide open for Allison Morton to stream ahead with Holly Erasmus and Chloe Parker fighting it out for the other two steps.

  1. Allison Morton (Westerford High)
  2. Holly Erasmus (International School of Cape Town)
  3. Chloe Parker (Rustenberg Girls High)
  4. Jessi Nixon (Fish Hoek High)

Post the controversy of a false start leading to a heat re run, the under 14 boys gave a great encounter of elbow to elbow racing all jockeying for the inside line on every corner! Spectators were even treated to the occasional whip over the wine barrel jump. In the end, round one winner Luke Moir proved too strong with valuable fast starts putting him into the lead with a clear path leaving Jamie Penfold to once again play catch up.

  1. Luke Moir (SACS)
  2. Jamie Penfold (Paul Roos Gymnasium)
  3. Zander Du Preez (Paarl Boys High)
  4. Zander Kruger (Hoérskool DF Malan)

With the first two rounds of the under 16 boys taken easily by Joshua De Freitas, there was a huge gasp as he fell out in the semi final. Neil Olivier took full advantage of this and streaked ahead as week on week he climbed the podium with a third, a second and finally the top step!

  1. Neil Olivier (Paul Roos Gymnasium)
  2. Jean Louis Strydom (Stellenbosch High School)
  3. Neil Von Tonder (Hoérskool DF Malan)
  4. Luke Williams (Paarl Boys High)

Round two winner Jarrod Van Den Heever was showing incredible pace around the track storming his way through the under 19 boys heats until a dreaded snapped chain ended his run. There was an ecstatic Konrad Blumers who found himself in his first final with Andrew Sparks who was carrying a wrist injury from the previous days racing. However, neither of them were a match for the clinical display of power shown from Matthew Keyser and Manie Lubbe, with Manie timing his attack perfectly around the final corner to pull a bikes length away at take the spoils!

  1. Manie Lubbe (Hoérskool DF Malan)
  2. Matthew Keyser (Paarl Vallei)
  3. Andrew Sparks (Reddam)
  4. Konrad Blumers (Bridge House)

Prize giving was a lengthy one, mainly thanks to the incredible generosity of the sponsors: Trek Bikes, Fox Racing Enjoy Fitness, Rayne Cam, Skullcandy and OGIO supplied a car boot load of prizes for the final prize giving leaving many happy faces! Local bike shops Olympic Cycles, Cycle Funatic and Sports World also supplied great gift vouchers for the winners to purchase from their stores. The event also received support from Krank’d Gear with Chris Nixon Cycling Academy giving out a one on one skills course and Ultimate X gave two double weekend passes to their event at the end of February where the winners will experience back flipping motorbikes and top skateboarding and BMX action. Henry Crous (Brackenfell High) walked away beaming as he won a Rayne Camera in amongst all the raffle prizes!

Being the final round, champions needed to be crowned! Amongst the ladies, it was Chloe Parker who took the advantage and walked away with the inaugural trophy for the ladies.

  1. Chloe Parker (Rustenberg Girls High)
  2. Jessi Nixon (Fish Hoek High)
  3. Holly Erasmus (International School of Cape Town)

A dominant performance by Luke Moir winning two of the three finals he made left him a clear winner in the u/14 boys.

  1. Luke Moir (SACS)
  2. Jamie Penfold (Paul Roos Gymnasium)
  3. Andrew Wyatt (Paul Roos Gymnasium)

After taking two victories and then falling out in the semi finals, Joshua De Freitas managed to defend his title by the smallest of margins of only 33 points in the u/16 boys!

  1. Joshua De Freitas (Paarl Vallei)
  2. Neil Olivier (Paul Roos Gymnasium)
  3. Jean Louis Strydom (Stellenbosch High)

After streaming to victory last year, Manie Lubbe had to overcome some very stiff competition to sneak ahead and successfully defend his title amongst the u/19 boys.

  1. Manie Lubbe (Hoérskool DF Malan)
  2. Morne Hollander (Hoérskool DF Malan)
  3. Jarrod Van Den Heever (Paarl Boys High)

It was however the result for the Overall Winning School that everyone was waiting for, especially with R10 000 from Enjoy Fitness in custom school cycling kit and a Rayne Camera up for grabs along with the trophy and all the bragging rights. It was Paul Roos Gymnasium who blazed ahead of the pack to stand victorious ahead of the other 25 schools!

  1. Paul Roos Gymnasium
  2. Hoérskool DF Malan
  3. Paarl Boys High

Once again a massive thank you to our sponsors: Trek Bikes, Fox Racing, Enjoy Fitness, Rayne Camera, Skullcandy and OGIO. The local bike shops Olympic Cycles, Cycle Funatic and Sports World for their support. Krank’d Gear, Ultimate X and Chris Nixon Cycling Academy for contributing awesome prizes. A huge thank you to Paul Botner Music for supplying all the sound for the series and to Shaun Peters from Reeds Motor Group Tygervalley for his immense help and stretching his vocal cords on the mic at each event. Thank you to Steven Smuts from SnapSport Media for his awesome images and our videographer who put together the incredible video edits. Big thanks to the venues: Stellenbosch High, Herzlia High and Bloemendal Wine Estate for hosting the events. High fives to all the riders for keeping the spectators throughly entertained with intense racing and lastly to the parents for all their support in driving their kids to events every weekend and encouraging them.

With the Western Cape series complete, it’s now time to focus on KwaZulu Natal starting in May – entries open later this week, so stay tuned to for more updates!

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