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For the latest news visit www.cyclingnews.co.za

VOL 16 NO 3

MARCH / APRIL 2015

LEGEND OF THE PEDAL

DEGENKOLB’S DAY IN ROUBAIX

LAWRENCE THE LAWYER BECAME A CYCLING LEGEND

RACE PREVIEWS • • • •

BESTMED CAPITAL CLASSIC BESTMED JOCK CYCLE CLASSIQUE OLD MUTUAL JOBERG2C PWC GREAT ZUURBERG TREK

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QUESTIONS FOR OUR NATIONAL CHAMPIONS

WONDERFUL

WINELANDS WOLHUTER AND HALEY TAKE INAUGURAL LIBERTY CAPE WINELANDS WIN

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FABULOUS PRODUCTS TO KEEP YOU AT THE FRONT


CONTENTS

Sub header

ON THE COVER The inaugural Liberty Cape Winelands Encounter vested itself in astonishing fashion – story on page 4. Pictures: Ewald Sadie

REGULARS

Editor

From the Editor: Capital Classic gives Pretoria a glamour event in May

Wynand de Villiers wynand@cyclingnews.co.za

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Product feature: 4 fabulous products to keep you at the front

Consulting editor

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Pulse pages: Amazing new Polar system for team-sport coaches

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Legend of the pedal: Lawrence the lawyer became a legend

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Bike shop feature: Activize Apparel activates new lifestyle store

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FEATURES

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Degenkolb’s day in Roubaix

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20 questions for Jacques Janse Van Rensburg: Dreaming of the Tour de France

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20 questions for Ashleigh Moolman-Pasio: A stellar start to the season

RACE PREVIEWS

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Bestmed Capital Classic: Cyclists marching to Pretoria

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PwC Great Zuurberg Trek: Roughing it in comfort

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New Jock Tour ups the ante for roadies

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Foreigners line up for joBerg2c adventure

Gerhard Burger

Contributors Phil Liggett, Coetzee Gouws, Andrew Mclean

Pictures Photosport International, Michelle Cound, Frank Bodenmueller, My Picture

Design Cinnamon Graphix C.C. Chris Dawson – chris@cgraphix.co.za

Printer Colorpress Pty (Ltd) Ryan Lotter – 011 493 8622/3/4/5

Advertising email advertising@cyclingnews.co.za or phone 083 269 7659

Published by ASG Events 116B, Glen Avenue, Willow Glen, Pretoria. Tel no: 012 751 4130/31/32/33 Fax: 086 730 3099

RACE REVIEWS

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Wolhuter and Haley take inaugural Cape Winelands win Aussie team dominate Tour de Boland

Cyclingnews March / April 2015

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FROM THE EDITOR

Capital Classic gives Pretoria a glamour event in May MARCH brought a significant breakthrough for ASG Events when the last of 18 government institutions gave its approval for the company to present the Bestmed Capital Classic on May 17. The negotiating process took more than a year and included countless meetings, impact studies and presentations. And it culminated in Pretoria receiving an opportunity to present a mass-participation race that could well rival the likes of the Cape Town Cycle Tour and the Momentum 94.7 Cycle Challenge. The challenge centred on the use of three roads – the Ben Schoeman Freeway, the N14 and Jean Road in Centurion. In the end the simplicity of the operational plan, with only eight intersections involved on the route, provided the peace of mind that all four metro police departments as well as Sanral and provincial traffic needed. Centurion will be the host for the inaugural version of ASG Events’ next big road classic, which is positioned to be Pretoria’s signature mass-participation road cycling event. The Bestmed Capital Classic, which will start and finish at SuperSport Park, will be Pretoria’s biggest single-day challenge on a road bike and will take place on partially closed roads out and back to Krugersdorp via the Ben Schoeman and N14 Freeways. ASG Events present six other national road classics, of which three are seeding events for the Cape Town Cycle Tour. These are the Action Ford Berge en Dale Classic, Bestmed Tour of Good Hope, Emperors Palace Classic, Bestmed Jock Tour, Bestmed Satellite Classic and Sondela SuperClassic. With the company firmly entrenched in presenting road races in South Africa, Pretoria represents the perfect location for another chapter in the company’s history. The event has the full support and endorsement of Sanral, Tshwane Metro Police, Mogale City Metro, JMPD and all relevant SAPS and disaster management agencies. For further information and entries (check out the nice early-bird entry offer), go to www.capitalclassic.co.za

Wynand de Villiers

Cyclingnews Magazine is available from these fine Cycling stores: Bells Cycling Cajees Boksburg Cajees Centurion Cajees East Gate Cajees Princess Crossing Cajees Strubens Valley Complete Cyclist Cycle East Cycle Lab Boksburg Cycle Lab Centurion Cycle Lab Fourways Cycle Lab Little Falls Cycle Lab Lynnwood Bridge Cycle Zone Design in Motion Epic Sport Gary Benecke Cycles Go Cycles Hatfield Cycles Hot Spot Cycling Linden Cycles Lynnwood Cyclery Mega Mica Cycles Mikes Bike Morningside Cycles Mr Africa Trading Pro T Cycles Ridgeway Cycles Saloojees Cycles Shooting stuff Sollys Angling Corner Solomons Lynnwood Solomons Woodmead Tony Impey Tool up Cycles Tour De Frans Trinity Cycles Valencia Wholesalers Velotique Westdene Cycles Xtreme Cycles

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SUBSCRIBE If you’d like to join our ever-increasing subscriber base, there is no better time than now. Simply log onto www.asgevents.co.za and click on the subscribe button The magazine remains free of charge at major bike shops and races throughout the country, but because our print run is limited we inevitably get readers that miss out on some of the issues. If you would like to ensure that you don’t miss an issue, a subscription charge of R85 for ten issues will secure a copy of Cyclingnews Magazine in your postbox every month.

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Cyclingnews March / April 2015


RACE REVIEW

Words: Coetzee Gouws • Pictures: Ewald Sadie

Wolhuter and Haley take inaugural

CAPE WINELANDS WIN Chris Wolhuter and Jarryd Haley claimed all three stage wins en route to overall victory at the inaugural Liberty Cape Winelands MTB Encounter in Wellington. >

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Cyclingnews March / April 2015


RACE REVIEW

Cyclingnews March / April 2015

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RACE REVIEW

“Coming into this event, we heard that it was more of an experience than a race, but the moment the guys put on the number boards, it quickly became one.�

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Cyclingnews March / April 2015


RACE REVIEW

THE Altech Autopage duo took the debut honours in the 175km Western Cape race in a combined time of 8:13:41. Flandria grand masters Eben Espach and Linus van Onselen finished second in the general classification in 8:58:29, with the SDK Legends pairing of Rikus Visser and Divan Koch rounding out the podium in 9:16:29. Pretoria Box U23 riders Mitchell Eliot and Neil Robinson, who grabbed the runner-up spot on days two and three, had to be content with fourth place overall after technical problems created an insurmountable time gap on day one.

Wynberg-based Wolhuter, who usually rides alongside regular teammate Hanco Kachelhoffer, said his ad hoc partnership with Rocky Mountain’s Haley had worked out well. “We came in wanting to win and managed to do that, so that’s fantastic,” said the 26-year-old. “Coming into this event, we heard that it was more of an experience than a race, but the moment the guys put on the number boards, it quickly became one.” Wolhuter said Eliot and Robinson had shown their intent early on the 67km opening stage from the Lanzerac Wine Estate in Stellenbosch to the

Le Franschhoek Hotel in Franschhoek. “We kept the racing together until the base of the first climb and then we broke away and went up there with the Pretoria Box guys.” Wolhuter said he and Haley had managed to get a gap over the top of the climb and extended it on the Skyfall singletrack that followed on the Bartinney lands. “There was a headwind all the way to the finish, so we just rode a good tempo that opened up our lead. “Unfortunately, Mitchell and Neil had a lot of technical problems which ultimately took them out of the running.” >

Cyclingnews March / April 2015

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RACE REVIEW

Altech Autopage’s Chris Wolhuter and Jarryd Haley.

Seeing what could happen, Wolhuter and Haley decided not to take any unnecessary risks and consolidated their lead on the 53km second stage from Franschhoek to Doolhof Wine Estate in Wellington. The two took advantage of a strong tailwind to cover the first 30km in an hour and give themselves more time on the rockier, tougher mountain trails after the Drakenstein Prison. “We had quite a nice lead coming into the third stage, which took place on the Welvanpas trails around Doolhof.” Wolhuter said he and Mowbray resident Haley were both familiar with the 55km circuit near Wellington and knew how to approach it. “It’s quite technical here, especially in the last 10 kilometres where there are a lot of sharp rocks.

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Cyclingnews March / April 2015

“We rode quite a decent tempo off the start and got away easier than I had anticipated.” Former downhill racer Haley took the lead into the technical singletrack sections and showed his technical abilities over the climbs, while Wolhuter drove the pace on the flatter stretches to secure an unassailable lead. Wolhuter, who raced for the Stan’s NoTubes road team in the United States of America during the 2013/14 season, said he was happy to have found mountain biking success again on home soil. “We’ve had a slow start to the year, been close to the podium for some of the bigger races but just missed them, so it’s fantastic to win again.”

He said the Cape Winelands race had been the right combination of a challenging ride and a five-star experience. “I think the first edition went off really well, there were some fantastic trails and it’s got the potential to grow very nicely.” For more information, visit www.capewinelands.capetown. Alternatively, find Cape Winelands MTB Encounter on Facebook or follow @winelandsmtb. •CN


RACE PREVIEW

Words: Coetzee Gouws

CYCLISTS MARCHING

TO PRETORIA For an army or cyclists, all roads will lead to Pretoria once more when the inaugural Bestmed Capital Classic road race takes place on May 17. THE organisers, ASG Events, believe the new 100km race, which rolls out from SuperSport Park in Centurion, is set to become the capital’s signature mass-participation cycling event. Rider safety is of paramount importance on the busy Gauteng roads. Therefore there will be partial closures along the Ben Schoeman highway and N14 freeway to Muldersdrift near Krugersdorp. The Tshwane, Mogale City and Johannesburg metropolitan police departments, provincial traffic authorities and ASG officials will patrol the out-and-back route, which features minimal road crossings and right turns to ensure maximum safety. Race director Wynand de Villiers says the event has been four years in the making and the support of all relevant state departments and national agencies such as Sanral means the riders can

look forward to the safest possible environment. “This event will be a much needed addition to the Pretoria cycling calendar and gives Gauteng cyclists a fantastic challenge as we head towards the colder months.” De Villiers says his organisation presents several other national road classics around the country, including the Action Ford Berge en Dale, Emperors Palace Classic, Bestmed Satellite Classic, Sondela SuperClassic and Jock Cycle Classique. “Pretoria doesn’t have any significant long-distance road events, so we believe this has the potential to become the big one-day ride.” The race starts at 07:00, with plenty of time to enjoy the long ride, which

includes only 800m of climbing – before the 14:00 cut-off. Massage therapists will be on hand at the race village to soothe tired muscles and bike mechanics will handle any technical problems. De Villiers says the event is well timed to coincide with the Pretoria Family Festival at the same venue. “So it’s a great day out for the whole family, with something to keep everyone entertained.” Enter at www.capitalclassic.co.za before May 8. No registration or late entries will be accepted on the morning of the race. Late entries and official registration will be done at Cycle Lab Fourways from 9am to 6pm on May 15 and at Solomons Cycles in Lynnwood between 9am and 3pm the following day. For more information, contact the race office on 076 621 1807 or eventsupport@asgworld.co.za. •CN

Cyclingnews March / April 2015

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PRODUCT FEATURE

FABULOUS PRODUCTS TO KEEP YOU AT THE FRONT With the cycling season raging on, Cyclingnews presents four must-have products you simply cannot go without. If you want to get ahead of the bunch, these products might be for you. DROP THE COMPETITION Professional cross-country mountain-bike racers looking to shave weight off and get that stretched-out profile, need look no further than Full Speed Ahead’s new SL-K -20° MTB Drop Stem. The stem allows for ultra-low cockpit set-ups thanks to its low 28mm stack height and -20 degree of rise. With its lightweight 141g, 100mm body, the stem is guaranteed to help you take on those long, challenging cross-country climbs. The stem body is 3D forged and CNC machined with an alloy faceplate, and the position is adjustable for optimum racing balance. The black anodised stem is available with graphic colour choices in red or black.

CRANK UP THE POWER Reduce weight and increase stiffness with Full Speed Ahead’s SL-K Light BB386EVO road crankset’s hollow carbon fibre arms. The crankset, compatible with almost every bike frame on the market, is equipped with a 30mm spindle and uses FSA’s Asymmmetric Bolt Standard for increased support. The crankset is secured with four bolts at 90 degrees to one another and a fifth on the arm. Three combinations are available: the traditional 53/39 chainring, 50/34 compact or 52/36 semi-compact. The crankset enhances performance and its sleek appearance with unidirectional carbon finish, updated graphics and concealed chainring bolts will make you look every inch the winner.

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Cyclingnews March / April 2015


PRODUCT FEATURE

HIT THE MINI BAR Vision’s new mini time-trial clip-on bars boast a new aerodynamic design with updated armrest material, which ensures comfort on long courses. Not only is the clip-on bar compact and easy to assemble, it also provides high-performance output with fixed-length butted aluminium extensions that are joined at their forward end by a composite aero bridge. The clip-on is embellished with an anodised black finish and colour graphics.

CLINCH THE WIN Vision’s new, more aerodynamic Metron 40 Clincher will not only assist you with cornering, but will ensure a safer and more comfortable ride with its wider 24mm rim section. Designed for climbing and cross-country, the Metron 40 Clincher is equipped with direct-pull bladed spokes, ceramic bearings in PRA (preload reduction assembly) hubs, ABS brass nipples, 2-to-1 lacing and wind-tunnel aerodynamics. Hand-assembled in Italy, these clinchers spin ultra smoothly, are influenced far less by the wind force than rival wheels and are designed to withstand hard sprints. These fast, balanced wheels will provide unrivalled performance at the most reasonable prices. •CN

Cyclingnews March / April 2015

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Words: Wynand de Villiers • Pictures: Photosport International

PARIS-ROUBAIX REVIEW

DEGENKOLB’S DAY

IN ROUBAIX German rider John Degenkolb (Giant-Alpecin) claimed the final group sprint at the Roubaix Velodrome to win the 2015 edition of “The Queen of the Classics” ahead of Zdeněk Štybar (Etixx-QuickStep) and Greg Van Avermaet (BMC Racing). >

Altech Autopage’s Chris Wolhuter and Jarryd Haley.

Cyclingnews March / April 2015

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PARIS-ROUBAIX REVIEW

THE German rider rode the race from the front in the final 20km after latching onto a dangerous move initiated by Van Avermaet and Yves Lampaert (Etixx-QuickStep). The group grew to seven riders, which also included Peter Sagan. Lady Luck dealt Sagan a telling blow when he punctured in the final 5km, and with the event coming down to a group sprint most commentators were favouring Sagan for the win. In the end though, Dekenkolb timed his sprint to perfection to claim his second Spring Classic title of the season after also winning Milan-San Remo.

"This is the race I’ve always dreamt of winning," an emotional Degenkolb said at the finish shortly before lifting the coveted cobblestone trophy at the finish. When Van Avermaet and Lampaert created a small buffer on the elite contenders inside the final 12 kilometres Degenkolb’s teammate Bert De Backer jumped clear. It created an opportunity for Degenkolb to follow just moments later and he quickly linked up with his teammate before forging clear and joining Van Avermaet and Lampaert. When the Etixx rider understandably refused to work, Degenkolb didn't panic.

He and Van Avermaet continued to share the workload. A group that included Stybar, Lars Boom and Jens Keukeleire joined up to form the final winning break inside the final few kilometres. "This is unbelievable. I’ve had to work very hard for it and my team was there the whole day to hold the situation under control, until I could start my race,” said Degenkolb. “We knew that it was going to be hard and that a big group could go to the finish. I was in a situation that I had to go, otherwise I’d be in the same situation as last year when I finished second. •CN

“This is unbelievable. I’ve had to work very hard for it and my team was there the whole day to hold the situation under control, until I could start my race.”

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PARIS-ROUBAIX REVIEW

OVERALL RESULTS 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20

John Degenkolb (Ger) Team Giant-Alpecin Zdenek Stybar (Cze) Etixx - Quick-Step Greg Van Avermaet (Bel) BMC Racing Team Lars Boom (Ned) Astana Pro Team Martin Elmiger (Swi) IAM Cycling Jens Keukeleire (Bel) Orica GreenEdge Yves Lampaert (Bel) Etixx - Quick-Step Luke Rowe (GBr) Team Sky Jens Debusschere (Bel) Lotto Soudal Alexander Kristoff (Nor) Team Katusha Sep Vanmarcke (Bel) Team LottoNL-Jumbo Bert De Backer (Bel) Team Giant-Alpecin Aleksejs Saramotins (Lat) IAM Cycling Borut Bozic (Slo) Astana Pro Team Niki Terpstra (Ned) Etixx - Quick-Step Andreas Schillinger (Ger) Bora-Argon 18 Florian Senechal (Fra) Cofidis, Solutions Credits Bradley Wiggins (GBr) Team Sky Björn Leukemans (Bel) Wanty - Groupe Gobert Grégory Rast (Swi) Trek Factory Racing

5:49:51

0:00:07 0:00:28 0:00:29 0:00:31

Greg Van Avermaet leads eventual winner John Degenklob and Sir Bradley Wiggens on the treacherous cobbles.

Cyclingnews March / April 2015

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DATES: 17-19 July 2015 START/FINISH: Mbombela Stadium, Nelspruit ON-LINE ENTRIES: www.asgevents.co.za ENTRY FEES: 1-Day event: R720 3-Day event: R3 950

BRACE YOURSELF! The 2015 Bestmed Jock offers a brand new challenge to serious road riders across the country. Besides the existing 3-stage, 1-day event which takes place on Saturday 18 July, the organisers have added another dimension to the event with a 3-day stage race covering 334km and a daunting 7200 metres of vertical ascent. The existing one-day Jock, which is an official premier seeding event for the Cape Town Cycle Tour, keeps its name as the Bestmed Jock Classique while its 3-day big brother will be known as the Bestmed Jock Tour. The Bestmed Jock Tour, which takes place from 17-19 July, is not a challenge for the average rider. It constitutes the first event in South Africa which is mirrored on the Classic European Alpine road race stage races, such as the Haute Route. There is no tougher 3-day challenge on a road bike anywhere else on the African continent. ENTRIES FOR THE TOUR EVENT IS LIMITED TO 400 RIDERS The 2015 edition of the Bestmed Jock Cycle Classique, which takes place on 18 July 2015, will feature a new stage 1 route from Nelspruit to White River.

THE JOCK CLASSIQUE

THE JOCK TOUR 2015

1 Day - 3 Stages - 154km – 2900m Ascent

3 Days - 3 Stages - 334km – 7200m Ascent

STAGE 1 • Nelspruit – White River: 44km

STAGE 1: FRIDAY 17 JULY • Individual Time Trial; Nelspruit to Kaapsehoop; • 30km, 1200m ascent

STAGE 2 • White River – Sabie (via Spitskop): 45km STAGE 3 • Sabie – Nelspruit (via Long Tom Pass): 63km For further enquiries phone the race office on 076 621 1807 or email eventsupport@asgworld.co.za

STAGE 2: SATURDAY 18 JULY • Nelspruit to White River via the Kruger Airport Road/Sabie and back to Nelspruit; • 154km, 2900m ascent. STAGE 3: SUNDAY 19 JULY • Nelspruit to Kaapmuiden via Barberton and back to Nelspruit • 150km, 3100m ascent


Words: Coetzee Gouws • Picture: Stiehl Photography MTN-Qhubeka pb Samsung

FEATURE

20 QUESTIONS FOR JACQUES JANSE VAN RENSBURG

Dreaming of the

Tour de France Team MTN-Qhubeka p/b Samsung’s Jacques Janse van Rensburg spoke to Cyclingnews about his first elite national championship title, his experience at the Vuelta a España and his dreams of riding in the Tour de France. 1

Winning gold at the SA road championships was a great start to the season, wouldn’t you say? A: Yes, I’ve been thinking about the championships for a while now. I won it when I was a junior and an U23 rider and I’m glad to, eventually, have the elite title as well. I’m really excited to be wearing the jersey.

2

You have won junior and U23 national titles, but this was your first elite title. What was it like to win? A: With Louis having held the jersey for the past year and the team getting invited to Le Tour, it was really important to keep the jersey in the team. It didn’t really matter who won on the day; it was a good result for the team and I’m really glad to have gotten that opportunity now.

3

You have just earned a top-five finish in the Tour of Oman. Tell us about that. A: We heard in November last year that we would be doing the Tour of Oman, so it was my first goal of the season. I had really good form coming off the Vuelta a España and did some good training in December and January. The conditions in Oman suited me well and I was happy to get a really good result there. It gave me a lot of confidence for the season. >

Cyclingnews March / April 2015

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FEATURE

4 What was it like to race your first Grand Tour in Spain? A: It was really nice. I made it a bit harder than it would have been because going into the break on the first and the second day was something you don’t normally do, but I’m one of those guys who take chances. I suffered a bit after those two days but then things got a lot better in the second and third week. I think it shows I have the depth to be a good tour rider. 5 How did you get into cycling? We’re sure there is a story. A: When I was in primary school I took part in athletics – 1 500m and 3 000m on the track – so I was always into endurance sports. I also did cross-country running. Our school hosted a small cycling event and some of the SA professional teams were there. All the nice bikes and the equipment caught my eye. I had a go-kart that I used to play around

with when I was younger and my parents said: “If you want a bicycle, you need to sell your go-kart”. So I sold the go-kart and my grandfather chipped in with some extra money and I bought my first bike. 6 What would you say were your career highlights so far? A: I had a really good U23 season when I was riding for the continental team. I finished third in the Giro Capo, which was my first good result at that level. It was an eye-opener that proved I had a future in professional cycling. The Tour of Oman was one of my best results. I also finished sixth twice in the Tour de Langkawi in Malaysia. And now, being the national champion. Hopefully it just continues from here. 7 What is your favourite cycling memory or story? A: When I started professional cycling as a junior I had a coach,

“Over the past two years I’ve really stepped up and I’m now a good GC rider for the team and focusing really hard on my climbing ability.”

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Barry Austin, whose big plan for all of us was to become professionals. We were quite good, winning all the junior races; I’d say we were the best team in South Africa at the time. We decided to go race in the Benelux countries: Belgium, Netherlands and Luxembourg. We stayed in Luxembourg for six months and were really excited and feeling good about ourselves. We thought because we were winning everything in South Africa, we were going to win a lot of stuff in Europe too. Our first race was the Grand Prix General Patton in Luxembourg. All of us lost about 20 minutes on the first day. That was really an eye-opener to what racing in Europe is all about. Those were nice days though, staying there with a lot of my friends from South Africa. We did that for two or three years, going to Luxembourg, and that’s really how the whole dream started developing. I’ll always remember those years.


FEATURE

8 How did you become part of Team MTN-Qhubeka and how long have you been with the team? A: When I was in South Africa, I was riding for one or two different teams all the time. I went to ride for a Spanish continental team (Burgos BH-Castilla y León) to get used to the racing in Europe. I rode for them for six months and then came back to South Africa. I decided to give Douglas (Ryder) a call and ask him if I could join the team. He said he had a spot for me and they accepted me. I started off doing a lot of mountain-bike racing. 9 Tell us about your role and contribution to the team. A: In the first two years I did a lot of the African tours, as in Gabon and Rwanda. My role was to be someone for the African guys to look up to and

learn from. That was sort of my role for the first two years. During the last year, as a continental rider and [member of] a professional continental team, that was what I was doing. Over the past two years I’ve really stepped up and I’m now a good GC rider for the team and focusing really hard on my climbing ability. With the mountain biking and everything I have good skills for the downhills. And on the climbs I’m definitely looking for some good results in the tours this year. After getting a good result in Oman and going to California, hopefully to get a good result there, I’d say my current role would be as a GC rider. 10 The cycling season is well and truly under way now. What is next on your race calendar? A: I will do Lugano, a one-day race in Switzerland, and the Tour de

Langkawi. Then a few races in France that will hopefully lead to being selected for the Tour de France team. 11 How are you preparing for the rest of the season? A: Definitely focusing on my climbing and my power-to-weight on the climbs. I’ll be doing a lot of intervals to improve that and then, just in general, focus on bunch position before the climbs. Those are the two big improvements I have to make. 12 What would you say are your main strengths on the bike? A: I think I have a good sense of when something is about to happen in a race. I also have a good sense of when to relax and save energy and when to go to the front and stay there. I’m also furious on the descents and I can push myself in that way. >

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FEATURE

13 Where do you spend most of your time when you’re not travelling? A: I am based in Lucca in Tuscany, Italy. I have a nice apartment in the centre with my wife. 14 What is your training routine on any given day? A: It depends on the time of year and which race I’m preparing for. I usually do about 20 to 25 hours a week. I focus on long intervals to improve my core strength. Closer to the race I will start doing easier intervals and something between a sprint and an interval at around one minute each. You can call those my max strength intervals. 15 What is your favourite cycling race of the season? A: I’d have to say Tour de Langkawi. I also really enjoyed riding the Vuelta a España last year. If I get to do the

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Cyclingnews March / April 2015

Pictures: Craig Dutton (www.pics2go.co.za)

Tour de France this year I think it will be my next best race. I’m also excited about California. 16 Talk us through a day in the life of a professional cyclist. A: Wake up, drink coffee, breakfast, go riding, have coffee again, relax, maybe walk around the centre a bit, do some touristy things, relax, prepare a nice dinner with my wife, start preparing for the next day’s training by planning my routes, maybe watch a movie, get a good night’s rest. 17 What are the primary cycling goals you hope to achieve in the next year? A: One of my main goals for the year is to do the Tour de France. With my current form I see myself doing really well if I am selected. I also want to ride well in California and finish the season with a few good GC results.

18 What are some of the down parts of professional cycling? A: All the travelling can become tiring and I do miss my family in South Africa when I am away. Not having my family close all the time is definitely one of the biggest down parts for me. 19 What would you be doing if you weren’t a professional cyclist? A: I’d definitely have been involved in sport in some way. I was focusing on being a sports doctor, so I think I would have been involved in the medical side of sport. 20

Complete this sentence. My guilty pleasures are ... A: . . . chocolate. But they say it is good for your heart so I don’t feel too bad about it. And sometimes, late at night, you will find me eating a bowl of muesli with honey. •CN


PULSE PAGES

AMAZING NEW POLAR SYSTEM FOR TEAM-SPORT COACHES

Polar have introduced their most advanced team-sports coaching product. The Polar Team Pro system is designed for fitness, strength and conditioning coaches who work in top-tier team sports.

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Cyclingnews March / April 2015


PULSE PAGES

THE high-performance Polar Team Pro hardware consists of sensors for all players, and a dock for quick data transfer and charging. The world’s smallest and lightest all-in-one sensor for team sports weighs only 38 grams, and players do not have to wear any additional vests or belts. The sensor combines GPS and motion-tracking technology with heart rate, thus providing extensive and accurate performance data. It even measures speed, distance and acceleration for running-based indoor sports. Live data is captured on the coach’s iPad from up to 200 meters via Bluetooth Smart, without external base stations. The Polar Team Pro app for iPad provides data and analysis on key

performance indicators. The coaches get an instant analysis with detailed player statistics and data over the session as well as player comparisons. All this invaluable information helps teams and coaches optimise training and recovery patterns, hit their targets and prevent injuries. Polar Team Pro web service enables deeper analysis of the team’s performance and long-term progress. Results and reports can be easily shared with coaching staff and team. To provide an understanding of the players’ activity, 24/7 and also outside of training, team members can connect their Polar wearables such as M400 and V800 to the Polar Team Pro web service. This will provide valuable information about their

daily activity, recovery status and sleep. Vesa-Matti Suorsa, product manager for Team Sports at Polar said: “We have a proud heritage in team sports. The preceding Polar Team and Team2 systems established Polar as the market leader for heart rate among top-tier teams around the world. “Polar is the leading innovator in sports technology, offering team solutions for all levels. We will continue to deliver competitive renewal to better serve the needs of our customers.” Polar Team Pro will be available in May 2015. To get going, the team will need Polar Team Pro hardware (sensors and dock) as well as a yearly licence to gain access to the Polar Team Pro app for iPad and web service. •CN


Words: Coetzee Gouws • Pictures: Warren Elsom / Capcha

RACE REVIEW

Aussie team dominate

Tour de Boland Australia’s team Drapac showed their Pro Continental class as they took three of the five stage skirmishes en route to a dominant overall victory in the Bestmed Tour de Boland in March. ON their first visit to South Africa, the riders from Down Under put some of the top local teams to the sword to win the 465km war of the Cape Winelands. SA export Dylan Girdlestone was a key figure in their international attack, but it was the Dutch sprinter Peter Koning who took the overall crown for the Antipodean team. The lead changed hands after each of the first three stages but it was Koning who opened up a 55-second gap on day four and pushed Bonitas’s overnight leader, JC Nel, into the runner-up spot. With all the leading contenders finishing no more than ten seconds apart on the final stage, Koning and Nel’s positions remained unchanged in the final classification.

Tour specialist Girdlestone, who has twice won South Africa’s toughest one-day stage race, the Bestmed Jock Cycle Classique, rounded out the overall podium. The Compendium Insurance points classification was won by Abantu sprinter Nolan Hoffman, and Westvaal’s Paul van Zweel claimed the red king-of-the-mountains jersey. Koning, from Amsterdam, said after the race his men in red and blue had accomplished what they had set out to do. “Going in, our goal was to take a few stages and go for the general classification.” However, it was Bonitas fastman Herman Fouché who first threw down the gauntlet by taking the 114km

opening stage from Paarl to Worcester. Girdlestone rose to the challenge when he showed his all-round ability on the mountainous 111km second stage from Worcester to Op-die-Berg near Ceres. The soon-to-be Melbourne resident was delighted to secure his first win on home soil in his debut tour for Drapac. “I’m really chuffed with my form here, especially before our first European stint in Italy. We’re doing a one-day classic and five-day tour, so this was brilliant preparation.” His teammate Malcolm Rudolph raised Team Drapac’s standard once more when he won the 30km time-trial from Ceres to Tulbagh on day three, but it was not enough to wrest the yellow jersey from Nel. >

Cyclingnews March / April 2015

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RACE REVIEW

On day four, Hoffman staged a coup on the 138km course that signalled his form ahead of his successful Cape Town Cycle Tour defence. With Koning in the day’s three-man breakaway alongside Hoffman and Europcar SA’s Bradley Potgieter, he became king of the overall castle after the decisive queen stage that finished, appropriately, at Riebeek-Kasteel. All that was left to do was for the flying Dutchman to finish safely amid the frontline riders in the three-lap gravel road charge up to the Taal Monument overlooking Paarl. “The guys did a really good job pulling all day in the front and depending on me to do the last laps,” said Koning. “On the gravel I followed and climbed at my own pace and reacted when there were attacks. I focused on staying relaxed; it was no time to panic.” He said although his riders were used to longer road stages, they were surprised by the competitiveness of their local rivals.

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Cyclingnews March / April 2015

The tour had been “really good and quite fun” despite daily temperatures hovering around the 40-degree mark, he said. In the women’s tour, defending champion Ariane Kleinhans of RECM took the yellow jersey on stage two and never relinquished it.

She held off a strong challenge from Time Freight E’s Lise Olivier, who notched up two stage wins to finish second. Namibian road champion Vera Adrian was third overall for Bestmed-ASG-Multihull. The tour attracted a strong field of around 500 riders across all racing categories. •CN

RESULTS ELITE MEN – OVERALL 1 2 3 4 5

Peter Koning (Drapac) JC Nel (Bonitas) Dylan Girdlestone (Drapac) Darren Lill (Privateer) HB Kruger (Abantu)

12:34:07 12:35:00 12:35:00 12:35:42 12:36:07

ELITE WOMEN – OVERALL 1 2 3 4 5

Ariane Kleinhans (RECM) Lise Olivier (Time Freight E) Vera Adrian (Bestmed-ASG-Multihull) Candice Neethling (Freewheel Cycology) Maroesjka Matthee (Bestmed-ASG-Multihull)

14:05:08 14:10:00 14:17:39 14:18:40 14:23:10


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RACE PREVIEW

Words: Coetzee Gouws • Pictures: Morne Marais

PWC GREAT ZUURBERG TREK

ROUGHING IT IN

COMFORT Mountain bikers are a strange bunch. They will happily fly down dangerous single track, bounce off insanely angled berms, churn through unidentified muck, grit their grime-covered gnashers on a near-vertical ascent... AND then grumble about sleeping in a perfectly clean and stable tent, which they didn’t have to pitch in the first place. Admittedly, those who can afford to participate in what can be a costly sport are possibly a little more accustomed to the finer things in life and probably more discerning when it comes to good value. Which is why stage races like the PwC Great Zuurberg Trek have identified and responded to a growing rider demand for unbeatable racing action by day and unparalleled creature comforts by night. Some die-hards may argue that this

evolution detracts from the tough pioneering spirit of those early mountain bikers, but others would say shut up and pass the room-service menu. Set high among the Zuurberg Mountains near Addo in the Eastern Cape, the three-day Great Zuurberg Trek hinges its brand promise on three key aspects: Great Outdoors. Great Indoors. Great Impact. The first bit is self-explanatory as the 220km route covers some of the province’s most spectacular and relatively undiscovered mountain-bike trails. The opening stage begins with a

“The 220km route covers some of the province’s most spectacular and relatively undiscovered mountain-bike trails.”

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Cyclingnews March / April 2015

dramatic plunge off the mountains before winding through the citrus orchards and waterways of the peaceful Sundays River Valley. The second, queen stage challenges the legs to the max with a day of climbing up along the northern ridge of the Zuurberg for unprecedented views of the vast Karoo on one side and the Indian Ocean on the other. Then all is forgiven on day three, as riders find themselves in single-track heaven on the national cross-country course at Hayterdale Trails before a final push up the historic Zuurberg Pass.


RACE PREVIEW

The picturesque Zuurberg Mountain Village forms the epicentre of the three-stage clover route, which makes the logistics much easier from a rider perspective. It certainly also helps that the cluster of quaint hotel rooms and chalets is a four-star establishment that makes good on the “great indoors” promise. Usually the preserve of foreign tourists who come to enjoy the elephant safaris of neighbouring Addo Elephant National Park, it becomes the habitat of the lesser-spotted mountain biker for one weekend each year.

Real bathrooms with hot showers, soft beds and fine dining provide a soothing balm to weary bodies and help riders gather the courage to face the next day. For those who still prefer to “tough it out”, a luxury tented camp is home for the weekend but residents still enjoy the delights of three-course candlelit dining and all hotel facilities. Participants can also rest easy in their beds or sleeping bags as their presence makes a difference to the underprivileged local communities who suffer privations on a daily basis.

Proceeds from the race have a sustainable “great impact” in funding the education of promising youngsters through the Unity in Africa Foundation. So whether they are roughing it in the bush or taking it easy in the race village, Great Zuurberg Trek riders help to clear a path for others to chase their dreams. And that’s perhaps the true spirit of (real) mountain biking. The event starts on May 29 this year. Visit www.greatzuurbergtrek.co.za, the Facebook page or follow @zuurbergtrekker for more information. •CN

Cyclingnews March / April 2015

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Words: Coetzee Gouws • Picture: Jetline Action Photo

RACE PREVIEW

New Jock Tour ups the ante for roadies South Africa’s toughest road stage race, the Bestmed Jock Cycle Classique, is set to get even tougher when riders put pedal to the Mbombela City tarmac in mid-June. IN addition to the traditional one-day, three-stage race, which features a new first stage to White River, the organisers have upped the ante with the introduction of the three-day Bestmed Jock Tour. Race organiser Wynand de Villiers says the shift is aligned with what ASG Events are striving to achieve in South African cycling.

“It forms part of the blueprint we’re trying to create in presenting events that are on par with European mass-participation races, built around the Gran Fondo concept.” Gran Fondos, which originated in Italy in the early 1900s and have remained part of that country’s cycling tradition, are characterised by a strong foundation

of distance and endurance; something the Jock patently shares. “Participating in these races is seen as the pinnacle of achievement for the so-called fun rider,” says De Villiers. “Yet these offerings aren’t available on South African soil.” First up will be the Jock Cycle Classique on Saturday, July 18. >

“It forms part of the blueprint we’re trying to create in presenting events that are on par with European mass-participation races, built around the Gran Fondo concept.”

Cyclingnews March / April 2015

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RACE PREVIEW

It starts with a 44km stage from Nelspruit to White River, followed by a 45km stage to Sabie via Spitskop. It culminates with a 63km leg back to Nelspruit via Long Tom Pass. The 154km route, which includes 2 900m of climbing, is essentially the same one that was altered three years ago because of roadworks in the area. De Villiers says new access to the traditional route, which went over Boulders and Hilltop, has enabled organisers to include these climbs in the new Jock Tour. “When that historical route became available again this year, we saw the opportunity to take the event to both ends of Nelspruit and turn it into the proper challenge riders were longing for.” Built for the endurance or amateur rider who’s ready to take up the challenge, the Jock Tour covers a distance of 334km, with an imposing 7 200m of total ascent, over the three days.

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Cyclingnews March / April 2015

All three stages get under way at the Mbombela Stadium in Nelspruit, with a 30km time-trial that includes 1 200m of climbing to Kaapsehoop set to warm up the legs properly on the opening stage. Participants then complete all three stages of the Classique course in one go on day two before tackling the traditional 150km triangle between Nelspruit, Kaapmuiden and Barberton on the final day. “We feel we’ve created the toughest three-day road tour on the entire African continent and riders should be under no illusion about its difficulty,” says De Villiers. Under Cycling SA rules, distance

restricts the participation of women and juniors in the Tour but provision has been made for these categories in the Classique. From a hosting and safety perspective, De Villiers says riders will be well looked after throughout the event thanks to the considerable buy-in and support from local communities and metro police. “It’s all about creating what is the ultimate challenge for South African road riders. The Jock has always been there, we’re just taking it up a notch now.” Enter for the Classique and Tour, which is capped at 400 riders, at www.asgevents.co.za. For more info, visit www.thejock.co.za. •CN


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FEATURE

Words: Coetzee Gouws • Pictures: Craig Dutton (www.pics2go.co.za)

20 QUESTIONS FOR ASHLEIGH

Moolman-Pasio’s

stellar start to the season Cyclingnews caught up with 2015 national and African continental champion Ashleigh Moolman-Pasio and asked her about her early-season victories, riding for the Bigla Pro Cycling team and the growth of women’s cycling in South Africa. 1

Winning gold in the national time-trial and road race championships was a great start to the season, wouldn’t you say? A: Yes, it’s always an honour to wear the SA flag while racing in Europe! I’m very happy to have defended my SA titles, especially in what was a tactical road race.

2

You also repeated your successes in the team time-trial, individual time-trial and road race at the African continental championships. What was it like to secure those wins on home soil? A: It’s always special representing my country and this year’s conti champs were even more special since they were held in South Africa for the first time in many years. Although the early-season races were not a big target for me, I was happy with my performances. The team time trial and road race were great team efforts and it was special to have family support in Wartburg.

3

What does it feel like to represent your country on the international stage? A: Pulling on the national kit is always special. There is something about representing your country that gives one extra energy and motivation. Knowing so many people are behind us and supporting from the sidelines is awesome. And it’s always great to race on home soil, especially when the events are international. >

Cyclingnews March / April 2015

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FEATURE

4 How did you get into cycling? We’re sure there is a story. A: I actually got into cycling late in life. I always had a love for sport, but played only the more traditional school sports while growing up, like hockey and tennis. It was after meeting my husband Carl while we were studying engineering at Stellenbosch that I found my talent and love for cycling. Carl was a professional triathlete and he introduced me to competitive endurance sports. I first tried my hand at triathlon, but found I am a hopeless swimmer. I then gave duathlon a go but, after suffering from numerous running injuries, I was forced to focus on cycling; a decision I will never regret. 5 What is your favourite cycling memory or story? A: My favourite memory is my experience racing the conti champs in Eritrea in 2011. Eritrea is an incredible country. The people are amazing and so friendly, and their passion for cycling is inspiring. The support the races received was the best I have seen anywhere in the world, and I have raced in many cycling-fanatic countries. The experience was touching and one I will never forget.

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Cyclingnews March / April 2015

6 What would you say are the top five highlights of your career? A: SA road champion for four consecutive years; third at the Fleche Wallonne World Cup race in 2012; bronze at the Glasgow Commonwealth Games; being named Africa’s Most Influential Women in Sport in 2013; and winning SA Sportswoman of the Year at the SA Sports Awards in 2014. 7 How did you become part of the Bigla Pro cycling team and how long have you been with them? A: Thomas Campana, the owner of Bigla, contacted me last year to join the team. Bigla can be seen as a reincarnation of the successful Cervelo Test Team, so it was a no-brainer to join them for 2015. 8 Tell us about your role and contribution to the team. A: With Thomas Campana it is all about teamwork. We have a strong team with a great combination of talented riders and I’m sure we will complement one another. I will be one of the team leaders, particularly targeting the hilly races and tours. Having said that, I will always do my best for the team, which will mean playing a supportive role sometimes.

9 Your husband is also a cyclist and triathlete. What are some of the advantages of being able to train with him? A: Carl and I are a team. I wouldn’t be where I am today without his constant support and guidance. He is an incredibly talented and experienced athlete. Training with him every day has definitely helped me to improve quickly and has made me a stronger cyclist, because he pushes me out of my comfort zones. 10 The cycling season is well and truly underway now. What is first on your European race calendar? A: I’m racing Omloop Het Nieuwsblad on February 28 (Ashleigh finished 11th – Ed). 11 How are you preparing for the rest of the season? A: I will be racing most of the spring classics in Europe with the intention to use these as preparation for the second half of the season. My focus is more on the races from June onwards … and world champs, of course.


FEATURE

12 What would you say are your main strengths on the bike? A: I am somewhat of an all-rounder, but my biggest strength is in my climbing ability. 13 What is your training routine on any given day? A: It differs, depending on the time of the year. But I usually do a ride, anything from one to five hours, followed by some core work or gym work at least twice a week. 14 Where do you spend most of your time when you’re not travelling? A: In Serinya, Spain. Serinya is a small town close to Girona and serves as our base in Europe. Otherwise, when I’m back in South Africa, I spend a lot of time in Knysna. >

“I gave duathlon a go but, after suffering from numerous running injuries, I was forced to focus on cycling; a decision I will never regret.”

Cyclingnews March / April 2015

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FEATURE

15 What is your favourite race? A: The Fleche Wallonne. It is a tough race that finishes on the top of the famous Muur de Huy in Belgium. The Muur is a very steep climb, just over 1km long, and the gradient maxes out at 20 per cent, hence its name (The Wall). 16 What are your thoughts on women’s cycling, particularly in South Africa, at the moment? A: It went through a bit of a dip after the London Olympics, which is normal in women’s cycling. However, with the recent rise of women’s cycling internationally and with the Rio Olympics just around the corner, I feel women’s cycling in South Africa is following suit. After Glasgow, I feel the SA women have come together and, with lots of hard work from Lise Olivier in the women’s commission, the numbers participating are growing, along with renewed interest in women’s cycling. It was encouraging to see a much bigger

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Cyclingnews March / April 2015

start bunch at the SA champs this year. However, I do feel there is still a lot of work to be done to ensure the level of women’s cycling here continues to grow in relation to the level internationally. There still is quite a big gap in this regard. This will only be achieved by sending a national team to race in Europe as regularly as possible. Lise and I are working very hard on this. 17 What are the primary cycling goals you hope to achieve in the next year? A: To continue to improve and grow as a cyclist and person, but more specifically to win a World Cup race, to podium at Giro and to podium at world champs. 18 Talk us through a day in the life of a professional cyclist. A: After waking up, I have a slow breakfast consisting of veggie juice, raw oats and nuts as well as a cup of coffee. This is followed by a training

ride of anything from one to five hours, depending on where I am in the season. Rides are longer during the base period and shorter once racing starts. When I get back, I have lunch, followed by some rest and [attending to] e-mails. Some days I’ll have a massage or do some core or strength work in the gym. Finally, an early dinner, some chill time and bed. 19 What are some of the down parts of professional cycling? A: I love my life as a pro cyclist, but I must admit it does require many sacrifices to be internationally competitive. It is hard leaving my home country and family behind to spend most of the year in Europe, racing on the international scene. The constant travel means I can’t have a dog, and I love dogs. 20 Complete this sentence. My

guilty pleasures are... A: Dark chocolate and a glass of good red wine. •CN


LEGENDS OF THE PEDAL

Words: Coetzee Gouws

Lawrence the lawyer

became a legend When 12-year-old Lawrence Whittaker set out to cycle from Durban to Pietermaritzburg and back on his ponderous Raleigh bike, he had no idea that the journey would last a lifetime. HIS father had set him the task to determine whether he was really serious about cycling. “My dad was tearing his hair out because I showed little or no interest in school sport,” recalls Lawrence. “I had tried everything but I was a year younger than everyone else in the class and on top of that I was, and still am, fairly short.” So Whittaker senior said if his offspring could manage the close on 180km trip, he would buy him a racing bike. Bunking school for the day back in the sixties, Lawrence completed the challenge on his ancient set of wheels and came back to collect his hard-earned reward. “My dad bought me a Cinelli hand-made Italian racing bike, pure white, with Campagnolo components throughout. On that, I won my first race and never looked back.” Only four years later he set a record as the youngest rider to win the KwaZulu-Natal open senior road title – by a full three and a half minutes. At age 17, Lawrence once again showed his natural endurance when he ran his first and only marathon in

John Lansdell and Lawrence.

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Cyclingnews March / April 2015

a shade under three hours. “I was cycling fit but hadn’t done any running and when I woke up the next morning I couldn’t move my legs, they were so sore. Never tried that again!” He also tried his hand at track cycling (“I fell off a lot!”) but his first love was clearly road racing. As a youngster, Lawrence powered his way to a win in a hill climb championship in Zimbabwe one year, beating Hugo Landsberg, a Rapport Tour runner-up. After a short break from cycling to concentrate on finishing his law degree at the University of Cape Town, Lawrence returned to the sport in 1977. By the end of that year, the City Cycling Club rider had notched up his Western Province colours and went on to win the 1978 provincial road title. That same year, he claimed perhaps the most memorable win of his career, the first Argus Tour, and entered the annals of the world’s largest individually timed road race. “All the registered cyclists wanted to ride the Argus because it was around the Peninsula and we hadn’t raced that route before.

“We also knew that, with the race being sponsored by the newspaper, we would get some coverage for our sport for a change.” The inaugural event comprised two races – a fun ride for non-registered cyclists without helmets and a serious race for registered riders, which started ten minutes later. “Our insurance wouldn’t cover us to ride with the non-registered riders but although we started behind, we caught most of them before the halfway mark.” Lawrence’s major opposition on the day came from Wimpie van der Merwe. “He’d just finished the Rapport Tour in which he held the yellow jersey for a number of days. I knew I was stronger on the climbs but he was very strong on the flats.” The two broke away just before Chapman’s Peak and Lawrence surprisingly outsprinted his rival to the line in Camps Bay. “It was a great feeling. My wife, Julia, also took part and I then cycled back to Hout Bay and rode back to the finish with her.” The race went on to become a family affair for the Whittakers and their three


LEGENDS OF THE PEDAL

“When I started, PPA had about 500 members and the Argus had maybe 2 000 entries. When I left PPA, it had 25 000 members and the race had over 30 000 riders.”

children. Their sons, Craig and Keith, have both achieved sub-three-hour finishes. “As I recollect, Craig finished 52nd overall when he was 19 and Keith was in the top 300 at a similar age.” These days, Lawrence occasionally rides the renamed Cape Town Cycle Tour and he has even participated in the mountain-bike event, albeit with a completely different mindset. “My only cycling ambitions are to enjoy riding on an almost daily basis but I really have no wish to compete. “I guess because I started racing from such a young age I have no interest in age-category racing but perhaps that’s also because I’m so involved with my work. “Perhaps when I retire it’ll be different... His legal career has certainly been inextricably linked to his sport and it was a fairly natural transition from competitor to administrator. As a practising commercial attorney, Lawrence had dealt with everything from sponsorship contracts to protecting brand names and intellectual property in events. “I’ve also chaired disciplinary enquiries for sportsmen, including cyclists, and have drawn up constitutions for various sporting bodies, including the Pedal Power Association and Cycling South Africa.” At the age of 32, he joined the PPA committee and went on to hold the chair for more than a decade. “When I started, PPA had about 500 members and the Argus had maybe 2 000 entries. When I left PPA, it had 25 000 members and the race had over 30 000 riders.” Lawrence’s role was to ensure that the Argus wasn’t lost to Rotary or any other organisation as there was competition for ownership and control. He therefore put on his legal robes and drew up the trust deed for the controlling Cycle Tour Trust, which, he says, “married together the interest of Rotarians and cyclists and guaranteed the autonomy of the event”. It was during this time that he also became aware of the need to create a unified national body for cycling because of the antagonism between the old SA Cycling Federation and the growing PPA.

“I realised that a unified body was going to be greatly beneficial and I believed that as PPA chairman I should lead and manage the process. Hence I drew up the constitution and conducted most of the negotiations.” In 2003, Lawrence became the first president of the newly created Cycling South Africa and held that position for two years. He says it was not long enough to achieve what he intended for the organisation, including consolidating the relationship between CSA and PPA, setting up a simple licensing system for fun riders, creating proper structures and getting good coaches and training for elite athletes to set up a foothold in Europe. “Unfortunately, the atmosphere was, in my view, too highly charged with provincialism and self-interest. I’ve never been interested in sporting politics.” He feels CSA has yet to achieve these objectives and there is much work to be

done in terms of cooperation between the national body and PPA, as was evident in the run-up to this year’s Cycle Tour. “I’m not up to speed with the latest developments but I know that even achieving unification in the first place was very difficult. “As I understand it now, the two parties have broken away from each other, and this is a great pity.” But he remains upbeat about the state of SA cycling in general. “Things are looking up. There seems to be more money in the sport and it seems to be recovering from the doping scandals. But we wait with bated breath.” Today, the 63-year-old Capetonian is still practising law and living in Constantia with his partner Karrie, after losing Julia in 2004. He is delighted to have taken on another challenging role – that of proud grandfather to little Hunter. “I thought it would be strange to be a grandfather but actually I love it.” •CN

Cyclingnews March / April 2015

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Words: Coetzee Gouws • Pictures: Kelvin Trautman

RACE PREVIEW

Foreigners line up for joBerg2c adventure Mountain bikers with a sense of adventure will traverse four of South Africa’s nine provinces when they set off on the sixth Old Mutual joBerg2c on April 24. WITH only 10km of tar along the 900km route, riders will be given the opportunity to explore some of the most scenic territory of the rural parts of the country. A total of 800 cyclists will tackle the nine-day tour, including more than 100 visitors from 20 countries including the

United States, the United Kingdom, Belgium and Switzerland. The race takes riders from the Gauteng Highveld across the Free State’s dry grass and maize lands to the scenic beauty and abundance of wildlife in Mpumalanga, the province “where the sun rises”.

Participants will also discover the beauty of KwaZulu-Natal’s South Coast after an unrivalled descent from the picturesque Drakensberg mountain range through the Umkomaas valley to the seaside town of Scottburgh. >

Cyclingnews March / April 2015

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RACE PREVIEW

After nine days of a testing adventure, the cyclists will plunge into the warm waters of the Indian Ocean and emerge with a different perception of reality. Race organiser Craig Wapnick has described the joBerg2c as a “ride that literally changes lives”. This is not only because riding across more than 100 remote farms make riders fall in love with the country, whether they have done it before or whether this is their first time. Many riders also participate to raise awareness and money for important causes. It is perhaps fitting, then, that the fourth stage takes place on Freedom Day (April 27), as uplifting rural communities is one of the event’s primary aims. This involves the organisers paying rural schools and community organisations in the eight race villages to man the water points and overnight stops. “If rural schools thrive, their children don’t have to be sent away as boarders. Young farming families settle down,

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Cyclingnews March / April 2015

along the route and there are plans to establish more. The Old Mutual joBerg2c has been fully subscribed since January, but Wapnick says cyclists are welcome to make enquiries. They would be assisted in the event of any late withdrawals. The race finishes on May 2. For more information, visit www.joberg2c.co.za, follow @joberg2c_journo or find the race on Facebook. •CN

more people remain in town and the whole local economy benefits,” said Wapnick. Previously, profits have exceeded R250 000 per race village and last year’s race racked up a profit of over R2 million, making the joBerg2c the yearly fundraising highlight for many of the schools involved. The race has also contributed to the building of six container libraries at some of the underprivileged schools

OLD MUTUAL JOBERG2C STAGES Day 1 (116km)

Karan Beef near Heidelberg to Frankfort School

Day 2 (93km)

Frankfort School to Reitz Showgrounds

Day 3 (122km)

Reitz Showgrounds to Sterkfontein Dam

Day 4 (121km)

Sterkfontein Dam to Winterton

Day 5 (112km)

Winterton to Clifton Prep on Nottingham Road

Day 6 (123km)

Clifton Prep to Glencairn Farm near Underberg

Day 7 (79km)

Glencairn Farm to MacKenzie Club near Ixopo

Day 8 (99km)

MacKenzie Club to Jolivet Farm near Highflats

Day 9 (84km)

Jolivet Farm to Scottburgh


BIKE SHOP FEATURE

Words: Coetzee Gouws

Activize Apparel activates

new lifestyle store A passion for cycling and a desire to introduce their own brand to the marketplace inspired George and Shannon Mc Phail to open a lifestyle centre in Benoni.

Shannon Mc Phail

“THROUGH Activize Apparel we wanted to offer different cycling-related services under one roof,” says Shannon. With a marketing and PR background and having been involved in event management for more than a decade, Shannon was inspired to run her own business and decided to do so in the form of a cycling accessories retailer. “It has been a wonderful experience. I have realised that if you have a quality product that looks good, and at a reasonable price, you’re halfway there. Our clothing line is very distinct and caters for men and women of all ages.” The store, at 19 Defiant Avenue in Airfield, officially started trading on January 30. “I was pleasantly surprised at the turnout for our opening. We were well supported and had around 70 guests who are all part of the cycling fraternity in one way or another.” Shannon says what sets Activize Apparel apart from some other cycling retailers is their personalised service. “We are passionate about keeping our clients looking great and feeling their best while they enjoy a healthy, active lifestyle.” Activize Apparel is largely a family enterprise that includes George’s sons, Bryan and James. An in-house massage

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Cyclingnews March / April 2015

therapist and ErgoFit professional bike set-up facility complete the service offering. “Each one is involved in sport in one way or another so everyone understands the dynamics of our clients and their needs,” says Shannon. Because the Mc Phails are cyclists themselves, they have a deep understanding of their clients’ needs and relate to them in a special way. The store caters for road riders as well as mountain bikers and the owners have partnered with ASG Sport Solutions to stock well-known brands such as Rudy Project, Sidi, Scicon and High 5. Another of their partners is FiT Sports Laboratories, which enables them to stock their supplements and products as well as the Louis Garneau range. “As a fun element we introduced a range of locally produced casual wear called Joe Blikzem, which is very popular,” says Shannon. The shop offers a juice and coffee bar on a patio overlooking a pool and garden, which has become an instant hit with groups of cyclists looking for some refreshment en route home. As an add-on service to their corporate clients and clubs, the Mc Phails offer custom cycling kits.

It is for all these reasons that their customers often describe the store as a little piece of heaven, says Shannon. Activize Apparel have also introduced an initiative to assist the less fortunate in the community. “We take in donations of good second-hand cycling kit and resell the items for R50 each.” Proceeds are donated to the Apricot Tree Centre for Stimulation and Development of Special Needs Children. The store also supports the Manger Care Centre, which provides upliftment and empowerment in the community through various initiatives. Future plans include an Activize MTB Clinic, which will be launched in the not too distant future. “I also hope to expand on our apparel range to ensure enough variety to cater for all needs,” says Shannon. “It’s an incredibly humbling feeling to see your kit being worn at cycling events and to know you have been a part of making that person’s cycling experience a great one.” Sample their offering from 08.30 to 17:00 on weekdays and every second Saturday. Visit their online store at www.activizeapparel.co.za or give them a call on 082 926 9421. •CN


Cyclingnews March/April 2015  
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