With the first race weekend behind us we could not ask for a better start to 2018!
Well done Matthys, Phillimon and Julian on your first wins of the season and to Philip for a great ride to third place.
Our academy is also in full swing with Kombo Bere & Pieter Du Toit both finishing third in their categories, we very excited to see what the future holds for them!
Also a big welcome to new sponsors execMOBILE, Thule SA and LOOK Pedals. We look forward to year ahead and thank you for joining the family :)
Below a summary of each riders race and all our 2018 Sponsors.
Matthys Beukes - Attakwas Extreme 1st overall
With a solid few weeks training behind me I knew the hard yards were done and that I would be in for a good result if all goes to plan on race day.
We had the plan of going for the course record so we set off with a fast pace. This quickly split up the field and soon it was myself, Philip, Gert Heyns and Tim Bohme out in front.
We entered the Attakwas valley and on the King of the Mountain climb Gert set a fast pace and I followed.
We crested the climb together but he unfortunately got a puncture soon after and that left me on my own with a good 60km to go.
At this stage I was around 6min ahead of record pace and I drew on past experience when I did this final 60km solo in 2012 to win the race and just settled into a steady rhythm. But sadly once I saw how wet the open roads were I knew that a new course record wouldn't really be possible so I could afford to back off a bit and make sure I reach the finish without any issues.
It was a nice 2hr tempo session, thinking of al the hard work over the off season that now pays off and making it all worth while.
It was also very special knowing our baby daughter Annabel is at her first race and awaiting her dads arrival!
Im really happy with my form at this point but according to my coach Im not even close to where I will be later so Im very excited to see what that will bring later in the year. Thanks to Ruan and Andre for the support before and on race day, our equipment was flawless!
2018 got off to a great start and Im so exited for the rest of the season with all of you guys.
Until next time.
Philip Buys - Attakwas Extreme 3rd overall
The last time I did Attakwas was in 2012 and I could remember most of the route, but on Saturday there were a few climbs that slipped my mind.
Conditions on Oudtshoorns side were perfect for racing and the tempo was solid. A few silly mistakes had me off the leading bunch a few too many times in the first half and I had to spend a bit to get back to the front.
Conditions towards the coast were wet and muddy accompanied with a head wind. By this time, the pace that Matthys was setting completely shattered the field and It was every man for himself out there.
Up until the 92km mark I felt fine and thought that I would be able to make it a one two for the team, but my energy levels took a dip in the last 20km and Tim Bohme from team Bulls flew pass me to take the second spot.
Across the board for the team this weekend was a pretty good start to the season.
For me my performance was solid enough for the moment and there is still enough time to add what is needed at Epic.
Phillimon Sebona - Drak Decent 1st overall
I would like to great everyone hope U all well
Thank u for the opportunity for this weekend it was the great race especially a two day stage race that brings our team work together.
Stage one was a fast start with lot of twist and turns fast flowing line's I made two mistakes the first mistake I over cooked the pace without seeing that what is on the other side I started over shooting the corners at around 15km down the line I crashed very hard but lucky I did not break something and the bike was OK to carry on .
This weekend I have learn that xco racing and marathon racing is two different racing xco is full gas from the start to the finish marathon racing u take up your time but just have to know were to go and how u must pace. I have seen that I have to work on my skills and my pace on the single tracks but am looking forward to ask Mr Phillip to help me up with skills before the Cape Epic because I will need them.
I thank my partner Julian for looking after me during the race he have helped me up and never give up on me and keeped me going and he made sure that he can coach me during the race. It was the great weekend for the team even Matty's and Phillip for doing very well at the attakwas and a very big thank you from our sponsors that made everything possible for all of us in the team and what a great welcome for Peter in the team.
Julian Jessop - Drak Decent 1st overall
The Euro Steel Drak Descent was the ideal way to start the year of racing. With such a phenomenal track that represented mountain biking in its purest form, I think all riders had huge amount of fun!
I absolutely loved the trails and to ride along the river with the mountains as a back drop was something truly special.
It was awesome to be with the Pyga guys again and and was great to meet the people behind Euro Steel. I am studying Accounting and it was very interesting to have a chat to Nick, the financial director of Euro Steel at dinner. I felt really special to be apart of such a great team!
It was a cherry on top to have two very successful days and to come away with both stage wins and the overall win.
A perfect way to start the 2018 racing season!
Pieter du Toit - Attakwas Extreme 3rd U/23
It was a great way to start of the year . And starting of the year being part the Africamtbteam Academy has just made it so much better.
My attakwas adventure was great, I started in the elite racing bunch. It all went well until 20km then I dropped of of the front bunch . Matthys’s pace was to high for me .
And when I got at 45km it started to drizzle and the deeper I got into the race the more it rained. At least the rain kept me cool . But at the spur water table the first woman Arian Luthi caught me! Im not to happy about that .
But at the end of the day I finished the race and I learned a lot about this long race . And learned that the pro’s pace are really fast!
And I want to say thanks to Ruan and Andre for the tech zone support . Through out the race . I appreciate all the effort .
Kombo Berre - Drak Decent 3rd Solo
Hi hope everyone is well.
Raced my first race in over 4 months was so excited to come back after long period of struggle with my knee and back. Worked quite hard over the holidays and did quite a lot of mileage.
Day one was fast from the word go didn't feel too strong as the race was part of my training, but still managed to put down some good power and finished 3rd in the solo category and fourth overall.
Day too was pretty amazing, supper fast from the word go, struggled a bit at first, but found it smoother than day one.
Finished 3rd overall on GC after two days of racing. Super excited for the weeks ahead as training intensifies and improvements made. The few months of the bike were brilliant and I have new goals and motives for 2018.
Have a blessed week everyone. Thank you for your support.
2018 Team Sponsors
KALAS Sports Wear - Custom Cycling apparel and casual clothing
Euro Steel - Distributors of Stainless Steel and Aluminium
PYGA Bikes - Fastest & best looking bikes
John Burnett Insurance brokers - Domestic and commercial short term Insurance
execMOBILE - Global mobile Broadband
Liqui Moly - Oils, greases, additives and car care
Subaru Cars - Subaru is about having the confidence and peace of mind to go anywhere, anytime.
Cadence Nutrition - Nutritional supplements
Maxxis Tyres - Bicycle Tyres
SRAM - Bicycle drivetrain and suspension parts
Quarq - State of the art in Power Meters
Nike Vision - Cycling and casual optics
Ritchey components - Handle bars, stems and seat post.
DEED components - Carbon rims and Hubs
Sox Footwear- Socks
Trailwolf Cycles - Full-service bike shop and Cycling lifestyle centre
Look Pedals - Bicycle Pedals
Thule SA - Premium bicycle racks and carriers