After a week of racing on the fat wheels it was back to some skinny wheel action. This came in the form of the final Western Cape Spring League events. The first being the Durbanville road race on Saturday, and the second the Atlantis Kermesse on Sunday.
Image Credit – Ronelle Rust/Torquepics
With my bike lights on, I lined up bright and early in Durbanville for the road race. The route was mostly flat with a couple of rolling climbs, the most notable of these on the Paardeberg circuit. I decided to attack on this hill (note: more of a hill than a climb really) and got a bit of a gap (first time in my life? haha). This prompted a response from the bunch and after a hard effort we had 6 riders clear, including: Charles Keey (Blend), Kyle Donnachie and Dave Garrett (Focus), Stefan Ihlenfeldt(Bonitas), Jan De Beer(Maties) and I. The group was particularly strong so I thought we had a good chance of staying clear, but this move turned out to be to no avail and we were reeled in.
The finish went up about a 1km climb at 5-6% gradient, nothing too hectic but it did make it a bit harder. I was relatively well positioned and took 4th place in the dash for the line with Stefan winning, Kyle 2nd and Reniel Matthysen (Intellibus) in 3rd.
We were fortunate to start at a more respectable hour on Sunday out in Atlantis. The event would involve racing 10 laps of an 8km circuit through an industrial area, not particularly scenic, but hey, we were here to race bikes.
There were two major breaks that stayed away for a couple of laps on the day. The first containing: Garret, Ed Greene (RSA Web) and van der Bank (Nu Water) went away early but was reeled in mid-way through the race. The second had young Chris Jooste (RSA Web) and Carstens (Nuwater) in the mix. I tried to bridge across to this move with Ed Green (RSA Web) and Boyd Roberts (Intellibus) with two laps to go, but the peloton was not having any of this, and closed us down.
Image Credit: Robert Ward
It looked like we would be sprinting for 3rd place until, with a rapid charge into the line, we caught the final escapees in the last 3km. I was again relatively well positioned and ran 3rd in the dash for the cash. This time the line came too quickly though, as I perhaps started my sprint too late. Unfortunately the PPA finish line photographic equipment wasn’t entirely up to scratch and it was difficult to judge who had in fact taken 2nd place, between Roberts and I. Well done to Kyle for taking it.
All in all, a good weekend of action on the skinny wheels.