Sounds kinda weird doesn’t it? Well it happened! I headed back down to KZN over the weekend to take part in the first round of the Engen Series held in a considerably warmer Durban. It also afforded me the opportunity to go home for two days and see my sister whom I haven’t seen since I left to the States in February.
As the Engen series only allows teams to enter 6 riders, Bonitas already had a full squad and Brandon Stewart of the Fedgroup Itec team threw me a bone and invited me to join the dirt boys on the tar for the weekend.
The mountain biker-roadies.
Image Credit: Bridgette Stewart
The race was short, only 90km but was fast as it covered that in 2hours. The route had a couple of rolling bumps which made the racing hard at points but not hard enough for any serious splits. Things got a bit sketchy a few times though with a car stopped in the middle of a circle as we approached it at 60+ kph… Additionally, having the short route fun riders on the same route as us especially in the last 20km, isn’t fair on them or us.
Sitting on Kevin’s wheel at 65kph we narrowly, and I mean very narrowly missed a lady on her mountain bike doing about 15kph. That would have potentially been a season ending crash. Another fun rider in the last corner with 200 to go also meant an end to having a go at the sprint for me.
Anyway we all managed to get out safely, really the main prize on the day, I wasn’t in a skin donating or equipment wrecking mood.
Big thanks to Fedgroup-Itec Connect for having me down on the weekend. Shot Brandon, Neil and Kev! Also big thanks to our superb back up crew Bridgette and Gary, although we didn’t keep them busy, they found other ways to entertain herself…
In other news, I have an exciting end of season project in the works. A return to the dirt with my fellow ‘South African racing in the USA’, Christiaan Kriek (guess you could call him my friend too), as we take on the Bridge Cape Pioneer Trek, a race which I have many fond memories of from last year. Guess we’ll need to get some mountain bikes and get working on those technical skills to take on the Karoo rocks! More news on this project soon.
*Apologies for the delayed blog, I actually typed this up on Tuesday and completely forgot to post it!