Overstrand welcomes FNB W2W MTB Adventure riders

Seen here (from left to right):  John Knust and Mark Ludwig of Team Sputnik making their way to the finish line at Onrus Caravan Park after completing Stage Three of the 2016 FNB Wines2Whales (W2W) Mountain Bike (MTB) Adventure.  Photo Credit:  Tobias Ginsberg

Three days of exceptional mountain biking concluded just outside of Hermanus on Sunday, 06 November 2016 with

elated mountain bikers completing the final 69km stage (featuring a 1200 climb) of the 2016 FNB Wines2Whales (W2W) Mountain Bike (MTB) Adventure.

Team Freewheel Cycology’s Gavin Klerck and Lionel Murray claimed their second stage victory, completing Stage Three in a lightning fast time of 03 hours 06 minutes 33 seconds.  “I didn’t think it was possible, but the trails have gotten even better,” says a very happy Klerck.  “We had a good stage.  We started with everyone and stayed in the mix.  At the first climb we pulled away and opened a lead, but then my bike punctured.  We had to fight really hard to catch the guys again.  On the fast downhill Tyson here (referring to Murray) put the hammer down.  The trails are really phenomenal.  Finishing first at W2W is massive for me.”

“This is a world-class event,” says Murray.  “The organisation is superb, the food, accommodation and trails are fantastic.  The riders are treated like professionals.  It just cannot get any better.”

Team Freewheel Cycology’s combined finishing time of 09 hours 40 minutes 31 seconds for all three stages secured them the overall champion’s title in the men’s race.   Team SALiRE’s Robert Cragg and Charles Mcfall claimed the second spot on the podium, while Team GRW-LCC’s Dwain Butler and Rudi Pollard finished third.

Theresa Ralph and Hamish Knowles of Team Galileo Risk snatched a hat-trick stage victory with a deserving finishing time of 03 hours 16 minutes 59 seconds, taking their combined winning time for all three stages to 10 hours 16 minutes 08 seconds.  According to Ralph, they had a marvellous day out on route.  “Hamish and I just flowed together.  We went out hard, kept it steady and fuelled well.  It might be last night’s wine that carried us through today,” laughs Ralph.

“Riding with Theresa is a massive learning curve,” says Knowles.  “I’m never part of the lead group.  Today we were out in front up until the 30km mark.  I’m really chuffed with that.  Riding with Theresa has me in awe.  I’ve definitely improved since 2015.  Claiming the mixed team title motivates me to achieve more.”   Team Recycles Racing’s Robert Kitching and Collette Bastard claimed the second spot on the podium after three days of racing, while Team Totally Stoked’s Tanja and Jon Oosthuyse finished third.

Team SALiRE Women’s Lolita Van Aardt and Simone Rhoda Van Aardt also celebrated their hat-trick stage victory on the day after completing the 69km stage in a time of 03 hours 41 minutes 20 seconds.  Team SALiRE Women’s combined winning time for all three stages was 11 hours 22 minutes 30 seconds.  The second spot on the podium went to Team Pharmachoice Ladies’ Michelle Van Aswegen and Emma Pienaar, while Sarah Davies and Beverley Wingfield finished third.

“Congratulations to all the riders and winners for completing this really tough event. You have set the tone for the rest of the FNB Wines2Whales MTB event series. It was encouraging to see so many cyclists coming out to enjoy the Adventure.  We could not have wished for a better start to the 2016 edition of this event,” said Mike Vacy-Lyle, CEO of FNB Business.

The final destination stage, Stage Three of the FNB W2W MTB Adventure started at the picturesque Oak Valley Wine Estate (Elgin-Grabouw) and finished at the Onrus Caravan Park.  Iconic sections on route included:  passing the Houw Hoek Inn, the oldest hotel in South Africa, meandering through the quaint town of Botriver past the Botriver School, experiencing the magnificent Wildekrans and Hermanus Trails, Gaf-se-Bos, the Fruitways Beach Crossing, the PERI river crossing and then finally crossing the finish line by the sea.

Next Up The FNB Wines2Whales MTB Ride will kick off at Lourensford Wine Estate on Monday, 07 November 2016.

Stage One:  Monday, 07 November 2016

Start Venue:  Lourensford Wine Estate

Finish Venue:  Oak Valley Wine Estate (Elgin-Grabouw)   

Distance & Climb:  68km / 1420m


Stage Two:  Tuesday, 08 November 2016

Start Venue:  Oak Valley Wine Estate (Elgin-Grabouw)   

Finish Venue:  Oak Valley Wine Estate (Elgin-Grabouw)   

Distance & Climb:   64km / 1400m


Stage Three:  Wednesday, 09 November 2016

Start Venue:  Oak Valley Wine Estate (Elgin-Grabouw)   

Finish Venue:   Onrus Caravan Park

Distance & Climb:  69km / 1200m

Each FNB W2W MTB entrant will receive an adidas branded jacket.  Together with Duesouth, the official retail partner of the FNB W2W MTB Events, adidas will set up an exhibitor’s area in the Race Village.  Riders and supporters can look forward to a firsthand experience of adidas’ newest TERREX range.

Family and friends are invited to show support on route.  CLICK HERE to download the Event’s Spectator Guide.

Like our Facebook page:  Wines2Whales

Follow us on Twitter:   @w2wmtb

For more information on the FNB W2W MTB events contact Chris on 083 760 3158, e-mail race@wines2whales.co.za, adventure@wines2whales.co.za or ride@wines2whales.co.za or visit www.wines2whales.co.za 

About FNB Wines2Whales

FNB Business and FNB Private Wealth have made a joint commitment to sponsor the annual Wines2Whales Mountain Bike Events.

FNB’s ongoing strategy is to support local and community events that show the potential to grow. This sponsorship affirms our dedication to providing an experience that is beyond expectation, through a sport that continues to grow in popularity as one of the key activities in the South African sporting calendar. The annual FNB Wines2Whales Mountain Bike Events are aligned to our belief that adventure is the heart of innovation and this is one of many platforms on which we seek to make a lasting connection with new and existing clients.


FNB Business – Get more bank. Do more business.

Email: newbus@fnb.co.za

FNB Private Wealth – Let us invest our time to manage and grow your wealth

Email: servicesuite@fnbprivatewealth.co.za

ISSUED BY:                          Newsport Media

ON BEHALF OF:                 Wines2Whales Organisation


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