Seen here (left to right): HB Kruger and Amy McDougall winners of the 2018 Fedhealth MTB Challenge +- 60km/Marathon.
Photo Credit: Tobias Ginsberg
HB Kruger and Amy McDougall took no prisoners in the Fedhealth MTB Challenge +- 60km/Marathon at Boschendal Farm Estate (The Retreat) on Sunday, 16 September 2018.
With three events to choose from (a +-60km/Marathon; a +- 30km/Half Marathon and a 15km Fun Ride), the 4th annual Fedhealth MTB challenge catered for all levels of mountain bikers, delivering plenty of mountain biking challenges, heaps of family fun and a scenic day out of the city.
Crossing the finish line in 02 hours 31 minutes 01 second, Kruger was very happy to successfully defend his title on the day.
“It was a beautiful day today,” says Kruger. “I’m a local and actually train at Boschendal often so I know the routes. We pushed hard after the 5km mark with four of us riding together. My bike had a mechanical at round about the 10km mark with my chain falling off. I chased back and managed to catch Nicol Carstens and Dylan Rebello. We rode together for approximately 20km. I went hard after Skyfall and managed to open a gap.”
“Nicol and Dylan are really good in the single track, that’s where they put me under pressure,” continues Kruger. “After the last water point I just rode at my own pace. The Fedhealth MTB Challenge is really well organised. It’s a fun, family day out. Entering is a no brainer really. I’m also a Fedhealth member, so taking the win is an awesome feeling. The event is definitely one of my favourites.”
Nicol Carstens came in second, while Dylan Rebello finished third.
Making her Fedhealth MTB Challenge debut on the day, Amy McDougall secured victory in the women’s +-60km/Marathon in an impressive time of 03 hours 03 minutes 22 seconds. “I’ve recently moved here from Johannesburg and have only heard good things about the event. I went as hard as I could from the start, but had a bad crash at round about 40km. I was a bit shaken, but had so much fun. The event organisers have put a lot of effort into the trails. It’s beautiful. I’m really happy to win today.”
Marleen Lourens came in second, while Frankie du Toit finished third.
Defending champion, Jamie Penfold was the rider to beat in the men’s +-30km/Half Marathon crossing the finish line first in 01 hour 08 minutes 46 seconds. “I competed at the Fedhealth MTB Challenge for the first time in 2017. This year the routes were different, I think they’re actually better. The single track was nice while the atmosphere is really chilled and relaxing. Winning today feels good.”
Johan van Zyl came in second, while Leon Claassen finished third.
Natia van Heerden was the rider to beat in the women’s +-30km/Half Marathon. “The scenery was spectacular,” says van Heerden. “The trails were great, with free flowing single track. The river crossings were amazing, just lovely to see. The Half Marathon is definitely a novice friendly route. It wasn’t too hard, but it still featured single tracks that flowed into berms. Overall it’s a good mix. It was amazing to see the amount of youngsters that were out on the trails today. The girls rode really well. Representing Fedhealth just makes the win extra special.”
Van Heerden crossed the line in 01 hour 25 minutes 28 seconds. Oliva Penfold came in second, while Caela Whall finished third.
Jeandre Ungerer crossed the finish line first in the men’s 15km Fun Ride in a time of 33 minutes 41 seconds. Helgardt Nortje came in second, while Robert Phillip Nieuwenhuizen finished third.
Megan Scholtz was the first rider home in the women’s 15km Fun Ride in a time of 40 minutes 11 seconds. Zoe Green came in second, while Eryn Marais finished third.
“Thank you to everyone who joined us at the fourth Fedhealth MTB Challenge at Boschendal Farm Estate! We hope you enjoyed the trails, the scenery, and the atmosphere… and that you got to relax post-race in true Boschendal style. Apart from the fitness aspect, our aim with this event has always been to create an opportunity for families to enjoy quality time together whilst embracing a healthy lifestyle. I’m delighted to see so many youngsters join their parents – keep up the good work!” says Jeremy Yatt, Fedhealth Principal Officer.
The 2018 Fedhealth MTB Challenge is sanctioned by Cycling SA.
Once across the finish line, all mountain bikers were treated to a foot massage in the Falke Foot Zone. The Festival Village was a hub of excitement with riders enjoying a Flying Fish beer with a mouth-watering Spur Burger while listening to a live performance by Newton & Co.
SPECTACULAR SPECIALIZED PRIZE UP FOR GRABS: This year, two lucky riders took home a whopping R10 000 gift voucher (each) compliments of Specialized Bicycles Africa, a proud partner of the 2018 event.
Additional sponsor prizes that were up for grabs included: Squirt Bike Lube hampers, THULE lucky draw prizes and four BMT Bike Shop vouchers to the value of R2500 each compliments of Fedhealth.
TURBO E-BIKE CATEGORY: This year the Fedhealth MTB Challenge, in association with Specialized Bicycles Africa, also boasted a Turbo E-bike category.
FREE ENTRY: Fedhealth members could enter free of charge – simply by typing in their membership number when entering online!
For more information on the Fedhealth MTB Challenge, contact Stillwater Sports on 082 991 0045 or email firstname.lastname@example.org