Friday , 4 December 2020

 

WORLD CUP XCO COURSE REVAMP RAISES LOCAL U23 EYEBROWS


Pietermaritzburg –The eyes of some of South Africa’s finest under-23 cross country mountain biking men’s were open a little wider than usual when they first saw the final product upon which they will compete at this weekend’s opening round of the UCI MTB World Cup, presented by Shimano which takes place at Cascades MTB Park in Pietermaritzburg.

Travis Walker of Kargo Pro MTB Team soars at the top of the interest generating Red Lipped Herald obstacle on the cross country course of the 2014 UCI World Cup, presented by Shimano, which takes place at cascades MTB Park in Pietermaritzburg from 11-13 April. Photo: Kyle Gilham/ Gameplan Media

Travis Walker of Kargo Pro MTB Team soars at the top of the interest generating Red Lipped Herald obstacle on the cross country course of the 2014 UCI World Cup, presented by Shimano, which takes place at cascades MTB Park in Pietermaritzburg from 11-13 April. Photo: Kyle Gilham/
Gameplan Media

 

Despite the likes of Trek Racing’s duo James Reid and Brendon Davids, Kargo Pro MTB’s Travis Walker and Team Jeep’s Dylan Rebello having all raced at Cascades countless times before, the quartet were all caught off-guard somewhat by the recent alterations course designer Nick Floros has made to the international spectacle’s stage.

“The course is now definitely harder than it was before!” explained Davids. “It’s probably even a little more technical that it used to be – which was already quite technical – but now it almost has a European feel to it!”

Brendon Davids of Trek Racing believes the revamped cross country course riders will tackle during the 2014 UCI World Cup Pietermaritzburg, presented by Shimano, this weekend is significantly more difficult than it has been in previous years. Photo: Kyle Gilham/

Brendon Davids of Trek Racing believes the revamped cross country course riders will tackle during the 2014 UCI World Cup Pietermaritzburg, presented by Shimano, this weekend is significantly more difficult than it has been in previous years. Photo: Kyle Gilham/

 

Local under-23 women’s star Candice Neethling was another to make her way cautiously around the course at first but felt a few laps under the belt would soon improve riders’ confidence levels.

“It’s practically a totally different course!” exclaimed the VeloLife BMC-SA star. “Some things from the old course are still here but it’s pretty much brand new because it is just such a different type of track to the old one.

“I’m glad to see the Tree House rock garden is still there but even that has been tweaked and changed a little.

“The new section (Red Lipped Herald) on the first half of the lap is so much fun, I absolutely loved riding it today.

“I think the new course actually suits me a little better than the old one as I enjoy quite a bit of climbing – which the new course has – so hopefully things go well on raceday,” she added.

Neethling and Reid recently spent a few weeks in the USA and Neethling’s two under-23 first place finishes will give her good confidence heading into this weekend’s World Cup series opener.

“It was great to go race in the States for a bit. We were looked after so well by my coach who now lives over there and I was happy with how the racing went.

Trek Racing's James Reid pays some close attention to the reworked and notorious Tree House rock garden on the cross country course ahead of the 2014 UCI World Cup, presented by Shimano, which takes place at Cascades MTB Park in Pietermaritzburg from 11-13 April. Photo: Kyle Gilham/ Gameplan Media

Trek Racing’s James Reid pays some close attention to the reworked and notorious Tree House rock garden on the cross country course ahead of the 2014 UCI World Cup, presented by Shimano, which takes place at Cascades MTB Park in Pietermaritzburg from 11-13 April. Photo: Kyle Gilham/
Gameplan Media

 

“Hopefully the confidence on the new course will continue to grow over the next couple of days and that, together with my results from the US, will see me do well here in Maritzburg.

“I’d be happy with a top ten at the World Cup but I’m definitely hoping for a top five and, if everything clicks on the day, then I definitely believe I can achieve that,” added the final year under-23 competitor.

While the likes of Phillip Buys (SCOTT Factory Racing), Rourke Croeser (Kargo Pro MTB) and Mariske Strauss (Orange Monkey Pro MTB) look to fly the flag for the host nation in the elite men’s and women’s cross country clashes, the talented under-23 bunch will be hoping to achieve some top results on home turf this weekend.

Team Jeep's Dylan Rebello is one of many riders who practised on the 2014 UCI World Cup Pietermaritzburg, presented by Shimano, cross country course with big eyes and raised eyebrows after the course recently received a major overhaul. Photo: Kyle Gilham/ Gameplan Media

Team Jeep’s Dylan Rebello is one of many riders who practised on the 2014 UCI World Cup Pietermaritzburg, presented by Shimano, cross country course with big eyes and raised eyebrows after the course recently received a major overhaul. Photo: Kyle Gilham/
Gameplan Media

 

The UCI MTB World Cup, presented by Shimano, takes place at the Cascades MTB Park in Pietermaritzburg from 11-13 April 2014. More information can be found at www.mtbworldcupsa.co.za

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Source: Gameplan Media

WORLD CUP XCO COURSE REVAMP RAISES LOCAL U23 EYEBROWS Reviewed by on . Pietermaritzburg –The eyes of some of South Africa’s finest under-23 cross country mountain biking men’s were open a little wider than usual when they first saw Pietermaritzburg –The eyes of some of South Africa’s finest under-23 cross country mountain biking men’s were open a little wider than usual when they first saw Rating: 0

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