Himeville –With 4500 riders set to take part in the 2018 KAP sani2c this year, 83 year-old Howick resident Arthur Duncan will be the oldest rider taking part in the three day event when he makes a return to the race after an eight year absence as he and his son-in-law Stuart Watson take on the Adventure from the Southern Drakensberg to the South Coast of KwaZulu-Natal.
Duncan’s late call up to the race comes at the expense of his grandson who is unable to ride the sani2c this year due to exams. Despite the eleventh hour offer the decision was a simple one for the octogenarian.
“I jumped at the offer straight away!” Duncan said boldly. “I always keep a good level of fitness throughout the year so I was quick to say yes, especially after an eight year break from the race.
“I took part in the first six sani2c’s and loved the event so I am looking forward to seeing how much the entire event has changed over the last eight years.
“When we did the first one in 2005 it was just one event; now with three different events and thousands of riders it has become so much more and I cannot wait to experience it!”
Duncan’s achievements on the bicycle have been impressive with the Midlands resident making the decision when he was 65 that he was going to ride from the sea to the highest peak in Southern Africa – Thabana Ntlenyana.
He took off from Durban and it took him three days to riding solo to get to the top of Thabana Ntlenyana, 3482 metres above sea level.
He was not done there and has become a multiple national champion in both road cycling and time trial in his age category and unfortunately missed out on the national championships last year when his wife Zoe had to go for an operation.
“I am actually more of a mountain biker,” he said when asked which discipline he preferred. “I love road cycling because there are age categories for everyone unlike mountain biking where I have to compete with 60 year olds!
“It is close to impossible for me to be perform well against people so much younger than me, but maybe that’s just my competitive side coming through!
“I have represented South Africa in road cycling and went to the UCI Road World Championships last year as well.”
Duncan’s late bloom continued as he became the oldest novice to tackle the FNB Dusi Canoe Marathon at the age of 72 when he and seasoned Dusi paddler Colin Burden navigated their way to Durban from Pietermaritzburg.
He then returned and did his second Dusi at the age of 77 where he became the oldest competitor in the race.