Elite category winner Matthys Beukes was positive about the turnout at the third round of the Madibaz XCO Series, which took place at Nelson Mandela University in George on Sunday.
The George local commented on the number of participants and said it was good to see a sizeable field.
“For this area, it was definitely a good turnout. Local cross-country racing used to be quite big here, but it’s died down a bit.
“Now they’re getting more and more with each event so it’s definitely a good thing for the sport.”
The excitement on the day made it impossible for Beukes to stay away, he said, after he planned for a hard day of training.
“That morning I went to see how the younger kids were riding and the course looked like such fun, so I decided to race rather than go training,” he said.
The PYGA EuroSteel professional proved that he was in a class of his own when he completed the five-lap elite race in 1:07:12 to finish well ahead of his rivals. Jan-Paul Gerber and Luke Cocksedge completed the podium.
He commented that he had been impressed by the fast flowing track, adding it made for a fun day of racing.
Beukes’ older brother, Gerrie, was also as the Bergadder event showed why the younger of the siblings had been inspired by him as a child.
He led the veteran men home in 1:00:36, around two minutes ahead of Iniël Hattingh and Deon Barnard.
Beukes said the event offered a rare opportunity for them to spend some time doing what they loved and it added an extra element of fun knowing he was on the track too.
“We don’t get to race together too much because he has other commitments and doesn’t get to as many races as he’d like.”
The four-part series, presented in association with Old Mutual Private Wealth Management, concludes with the Chameleon event at the end of September.