Huge turnout for Mountain Bike National Champs

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Mariske Strauss (XCO – U23 Women)

Interest and support in competitive mountain biking continues to grow from strength to strength. Evidence in this is the substantial increase in entries of participants at this year’s 2013 Cycling SA-MTB National Championships, powered by Frontier Events on 20 and 21 July.

Eastern Cape plays host to this premier event on the annual mountain biking calendar and promises to offer all sorts of excitement. The 350-plus strong field includes Olympians Philip Buys and Candice Neethling, plus all of the top performers from the season’s Cup Series including Matthys Beukes, Stuart Marais, Brendon Davids, Arno du Toit, James Reid, Gert Heyns, Rourke Croeser, Travis Walker, Mariske Strauss, Yolande Speedy and Samantha Sanders, to name a few.

The downhill category also sees a stacked number of entries, with top riders such as Timothy Bentley, Jonty Neethling, Samuel Bull, Alasdair Fey, Stefan Garlicki, Tiaan Odendaal, Gregg Brown, Adi van der Merwe, Nadia Botha and more, all ready for the challenge for the championship jersey.

Most noticeable is the increase in the 30-year-old and above Masters’ categories, which has seen sizeable growth that can be attributed to the hosting of the Masters’ World Championships in Pietermartizburg in a month’s time. The Masters, Vets and Sub Vet men’s categories boast over 30 entrants per class, while the promising Youth Men category boasts over 35 entries alone.

The National Champs offers the various category winners the honour of earning and wearing the National Jersey with pride, especially when the winners can wear the jersey in a world championship event in their home country.

The Mountain Events team together with the owners of Hayterdale Trails have prepared what promises to be an exciting weekend of competition in the cross-country (XCO) and downhill (DHI) disciplines.

Cross-country and downhill specialists will race at Hayterdale Trails at the base of the Zuurberg Pass near Addo. Spectators are most welcome to attend and support South Africa’s mountain biking stars, and entry for spectators is free.

For any further information regarding the 2013 Cycling SA-MTB National Championships contact Cycling SA MTB Director Brett Coates on 082 774 5821 or event organiser Brad Jackson on 082 651 9182.

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