Two Stanfordians, Gunther Katzke and Herman Fourie, sponsored by Insect Science, enjoyed a spectacular day at the SA Cup Nationals MTB XCO race recently. It was hosted in the Western Cape at Bloemendal Estate near Cape Town, being the 3rd round of this XCO series.
The lads raced a tough field of competitors from all over SA, numbering nearly fifty riders at the start line. The technical downhill sections, combined with long gruelling climbs and switchbacks, all in 30+ degrees heat, was not enough to deter our boys from distinguishing themselves as riders of note and competing for the top position in SA. When all was said and done and the dust had settled, Gunther came out with a strong second place finish, and Herman with a well-deserved fifth place, having recovered from a fall in February. With one event left in the SA Cup series, and the South African National Championship race later in the year, the boys are putting in long hours of training and preparation.
Over the weekend of the 24th April, the second instalment of the Limpopo MTB XCO series was held at Louis Trichardt High School. Stanford was again well-represented by riders who love the sport and showed that we are a school to be reckoned with on the bicycle! In the Sub-Junior Division, Gordon Noel took the honours receiving first place with a great race. Watch this young man as he is fast becoming one of the top riders in his age category! Tristan Brett also made his first appearance on the XCO race course this year, pushing hard and finishing well.
It was the big guns though that got the adrenaline flowing, ending off the day with the Junior Class race with a tightly contested bunch up front. At the finish line after five laps of mixed single track and climbs, Jarryd Gosling came in sixth, Herman Fourie in third, and Gunther Katzke raced to a sprint finish in first place. Well done to all our riders. We would like to encourage more pupils to join this exciting sport and enlarge our footprint on the MTB scene.