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De Lange wins 2017 Trans-Karoo MTB

On Saturday 2 September, Deon de Lange wrote his name in the MTB history books when he won the 2017 Trans-Karoo MTB in 10:12.36 in his first attempt at the event. Helena Bester was the first individual female across the finish line in 13:59.05, while Dominique Provoyeur and Rozanne Schreiber won the team section in 12:04.11 with a top-10 finish to boot.

Over the last 5 years the Trans-Karoo MTB has built a solid reputation for a ‘bucket list’ event;  one of the toughest  one-day endurance mountain biking challenges on the calendar and an event that tests both physical and mental fitness. To pedal 247 km off-road within 17 hours is not an easy task in anyone’s books, and 2017 was no different.

The race started at 07h00 in Sutherland where the start line temperature was minus 3 degrees. The front riders reached CP1 at 47 km in a blistering 90 minutes, while the last riders clocked into CP1 at 10h00. From there the fast descent down Ouberg Pass provided a welcome breather before the riders reached the undulating plains of the Tankwa Karoo.

The pace stayed hard in the front with De Lange, Hein Bingle and Frank de Busccher soon pulling away from the second group of riders, reaching CP2 some 4 minutes ahead of their nearest rivals and staying clear for the remainder of the ride. De Busccher was dropped just outside CP4, with De Lange and Bingle staying together until the last few km before the finish line.

“It was tough, really tough. But it was a lot of fun,” de Lange said after the ride.

In the team section, Provoyeur and Schreiber (Team Gin & Tonic) led from start to finish, looking strong throughout the day. 

Of the 85 starters, 50 riders completed the event.

The Trans-Karoo MTB alternates annually between a ‘down’ (Sutherland to Kaleo outside Ceres) and an ‘up’ ride (Ceres to Sutherland).  

“The ‘down’ ride was traditionally slightly easier as it excludes the climb up the notorious Ouberg Pass,” explained Robert Vogel from the Pedal Power Association. “However, this year the finish changed to Kaleo near Ceres, which includes a 10 km climb within the last 45 km. That was tough, especially for the back markers who walked up the pass in the dark.”

The organisers are looking at moving the date for 2018 back to end-April. Event photographs and results are available on the Pedal Power Association Facebook page as well as www.transkaroomtb.co.za

Top 10 RESULTS

1

Deon

De Lange

M

10:12:36

Ind

2

Hein

Bingle

M

10:15:52

Ind

3

Frank

De Busscher

M

10:40:19

Ind

4

Deon

Botha

M

11:18:27

Ind

5

Paul

Roux

M

11:24:16

Ind

6

Liam

Somers

M

11:24:16

Ind

7

Craig

Edgar

M

11:30:13

Ind

8

Eugene

Quass

M

11:59:33

Ind

9

Dominique

Provoyeur

F

12:04:11

Team 1

10

Rozanne

Schreiber

F

12:04:11

Team 1