The seventh edition of the Cape Pioneer Trek international mountain bike stage race ended on Saturday with South Africans Matthys Beukes and Gert Heyns of SCOTT Factory Racing LCB 1 claiming the overall victory. Switzerland’s Esther Suss and Great Britain’s Catherine Williamson of Sasol Racing claimed the women’s title.
Beukes and Heyns won a total of three stages. Their combination of power and skill on Stage 3 from Oudtshoorn to De Rust, which they won comfortably, was the defining day for them. And a win on Stage 4 at the summit of the Swartberg Pass confirmed their superiority in a race that delivered tight podium battles daily.
Stage 3 also proved the defining stage in the women’s race when the powerful pairing of Suss and Williamson conceded their increasingly solid lead due to punctures. But a gritty Stage 4 effort saw them climb back into the lead with a stunning ascent of the Swartberg Pass.
Philip Buys and Anro du Toit of SCOTT Factory Racing LCB 2 won the final stage, a 68km haul from Calitzdorp to Oudtshoorn to secure their third stage win of the seven-day event. Dylan Rebello and Thinus Redlinghuys of Team Jeep finished second for their best stage result of the week with the Dutch duo of Bram Rood and Mos Gerben (KMC-Mitsubishi-Koga-Stauwdam Assen) rounding out the podium places for the day.
Italian brothers Roberto and Emanuele Crisi (Celeste Kento Avvenia) were second in the overall race, 14:33 down on Beukes and Heyns, with Rood and Gerben rounding out an international podium blend.
In the women’s race on Saturday, Suss and Williamson secured their fifth stage win to grab their first overall title by what is the closest ever victory margin in the women’s division. After seven days and 541km of racing, their lead was a relatively slim 7min14sec over the Team Ascendis Health pairing of Robyn de Groot (RSA) and Jennie Stenerhag (SWE). South Africans Marlene Lourens and Desiree Loubser (Fair Cape) were third.
With six stage wins, including the final leg, South Africans Rob Sim and Doug Brown (Trek Robert Daniel) dominated the Veteran’s category, while Waleed Baker and Joao Mendes (PitstopSport24hrs), stage winners on the final day, secured the Masters’ crown with a measured consistency that saw them claim five stage wins.
The Mixed category saw Oudtshoorn residents Kobus and Fienie Barnard (Klein Karoo Mixed) claim a comfortable overall victory, neatly concluded with a win on the final stage, which finished in their home town. It was their sixth stage win of the event underlining their superiority in the division.
Lara-Ann Everts-Van de Venter made the Solo women’s race her own, with four stage wins, while Craig Uria triumphed after a race-long battle in the competitive Solo men’s category, securing victory on the final stage too.
A total of 78 two-rider teams and 27 solo competitors completed the seven-day race, which took place in mostly warm to hot, dry conditions and included some of the Western Cape’s most dramatic landscapes, ranging from the beaches of Mossel Bay to the forests in George to the monstrous climb of the Swartberg Pass, which separates the Small Karoo and the Great Karoo semi-deserts.
Riders from 15 nations contested the event, which holds an International Cycling Union grading offering rankings points to the top 25 overall finishers in the men and women’s team divisions, a useful boost for nations in their quest to secure Rio Olympic Games quota allocations.
For more information on the Cape Pioneer Trek, visit www.capepioneer.co.za and for photo galleries, find Cape Pioneer Trek on Facebook.
Cape Pioneer Trek 2015
Stage 6, 68km from Calitzdorp to Oudtshoorn
1 Philip Buys (RSA) / Arno du Toit (RSA) – SCOTT Factory Racing LCB 2 2:25:21
2 Dylan Rebello (RSA) / Thinus Redlinghuys (RSA) – Team Jeep 4:13:16
3 Bram Rood (NED) / Mos Gerben (NED) – KMC-Mitsubishi-Koga-Stauwdam Assen 2:27:25
4 Roberto Crisi (ITA) /Emanuele Crisi (ITA) – Celeste Kento Avvenia 2:30:10
5 Erik Kleinhans (RSA) / Chris Wolhuter (RSA) – Asrin Pro Cycling 2:33:02
1 Catherine Williamson (GBR) / Esther Suss (SUI) – Sasol Racing 2:44:25
2 Jennie Stenerhag (SWE) / Robyn de Groot (RSA) – Ascendis Health 2:44:33
3 Marlene Lourens (RSA) / Desiree Loubser (RSA) – Fair Cape 3:29:18
1 Rob Sim (RSA) / Doug Brown (RSA) – Trek Robert Daniel 2:38:21
2 Frank Schmaehling (GER) / Felix Prinz (GER) – Epic Fighters 2:44:15
3 Greg Anderson (RSA) / Deon Kruger (RSA) Bus Boys 2:47:44
1 Joao Mendes (RSA) / Waleed Baker (RSA) – PitstopSport24hrs 2:52:10
2 Dirk Labuschagne (RSA) / Andre Taylor (RSA) – Rothwell-Risksolve 3:00:59
3 Anton Terblanche (RSA) / Hein Giliomee (RSA) – Seattle 3:03:15
1 Fienie Barnard (RSA) / Kobus Barnard (RSA) – Klein Karoo Mixed 2:49:39
2 Monica Glover (RSA) / Danny Fowler (RSA) – The Bicycle Service Company 2:52:03
3 Dalene van der Leek (RSA) / Igna de Villiers (RSA) – Sasol Mixed 2:52:13
1 Craig Uria (RSA) 2:34:07
2 Shane Daniel (RSA) 2:38:00
3 Raoul de Jongh (RSA) 2:38:31
1 Carmen Andrews (RSA) 3:04:56
2 Lara-Ann Everts-Van de Venter (RSA) 3:08:28
3 Katja Steenkamp (RSA) 3:18:18
General Classification after Stage 5
1 Matthys Beukes (RSA) / Gert Heyns (RSA) – SCOTT Factory Racing LCB 1 21:46:10
2 Robert Crisi (ITA) /Emanuele Crisi (ITA) – Celeste Kento Avvenia 22:00:44
3 Bram Rood (NED) / Mos Gerben (NED) – KMC-Mitsubishi-Koga-Stauwdam Assen 22:06:22
4 Philip Buys (RSA) / Arno du Toit (RSA) – SCOTT Factory Racing LCB 2 22:15:57
5 Dylan Rebello (RSA) / Thinus Redlinghuys (RSA) – Team Jeep 22:17:02
1 Catherine Williamson (GBR) / Esther Suss (SUI) – Sasol Racing 24:51:42
2 Jennie Stenerhag (SWE) / Robyn de Groot (RSA) – Ascendis Health 24:58:57
3 Marlene Lourens (RSA) / Desiree Loubser (RSA) – Fair Cape 31:16:53
1 Rob Sim (RSA) / Doug Brown (RSA) – Trek Robert Daniel 23:27:15
2 Greg Anderson (RSA) / Deon Kruger (RSA) – Bus Boys 25:11:04
3 Frank Schmaehling (GER) / Felix Prinz (GER) – Epic Fighters 25:38:22
1 Joao Mendes (RSA) / Waleed Baker (RSA) – PitstopSport24hrs 26:30:25
2 Jozef de Meyer (BEL) / Renaat Verbeke (BEL) – L4 L5 28;24:08
3 Dirk Labuschagne (RSA) / Andre Taylon (RSA) – Rothwell-Risksolve 29:07:55
1 Fienie Barnard (RSA) / Kobus Barnard (RSA) – Klein Karoo Mixed 25:27:53
2 Dalene van der Leek (RSA) / Igna de Villiers (RSA) – Sasol Mixed 26:28:19
3 Monica Glover (RSA) / Danny Fowler (RSA) – The Bicycle Service Company 26:31:51
1 Craig Uria (RSA) 23:10:38
2 Richard Damant (RSA) 23:33:29
3 Raoul de Jongh (RSA) 23:58:45
1 Lara-Ann Everts-Van de Venter (RSA) 29:26:27
2 Carmen Andrews (RSA) 30:08:43
3 Katja Steenkamp (RSA) 30:52:41
For full results visit www.capepioneer.co.za.