Sappi Karkloof Classic
Challenge Media Release
Embargo : None
Written by : Dave Macleod
Enduro stars kick start
Sappi Karkloof Classic Challenge three week window
Karkloof – As the three week window for the innovative Sappi Karkloof
Classic Challenge opened this past weekend, it was the enduro stars who
basked in the limelight and scorching hot weather conditions in the
With the original event in May cancelled during the hard lockdown, the
reshaped event now allows riders and runners to race on the fabled
Karkloof trails over a three week window period, but with special
dispensation being given to the elite athletes keen to challenge for the
prized Karkloof titles, and the good prize money on offer.
The event organisers created two opportunities for the marathoners to
race the tough 60km layout but with the Illovo Eston MTB event on Sunday
occupying their local MTB elites’ attention, the stage was left clear
for the enduro community to steal the limelight.
Defending Sappi Karkloof Classic champion Keira Duncan made the most of
his knowledge of his local trails to post the fastest combined time over
the five timed stages to edge out Underberg athlete Andrew Houston and
Matthew Green, with junior star Beanie Thies posting the top women’s
time ahead of XCO specialist Bianca Haw.
"We battled it out in the heat," said Duncan. "At one stage the
temperature was 38 degrees! I managed to catch a swim at the Karkloof
Falls to cool down, which was a bonus."
"I was able to manage myself over the two hours and 35 kilometers
without dehydrating. I am looking forward to being able to re-run it
again in two week's time, as it was a really great weekend.
"It is pretty cool that the format allows us to give it another bash and
hopefully improve our times," said Duncan.
Omar Wilson provided arguably the result of the day as the sub-junior
raced to an impressive fifth place overall.
"He is a really talented up-and-coming rider and managed to bump Cam
Morewood into second place in the junior competition. There is a very
exciting bunch of young emerging enduro riders from this area coming
through the ranks, which is exciting for the future," said Duncan.
The elite enduro results were notably close, making the second
opportunity to ride the descents on 7 November an attractive proposition
for the riders jostling for places on the various podiums.
Many mountain biking and trail running enthusiasts took advantage of the
warm weather and the first day of the three-week window of the
innovative festival format to ride the 60km, 40km and 20km MTB options
or the 21km and 10km trail running routes, while adhering to the
required lockdown protocols.
The festival allows riders and runners to use any day of the 22 day
window to register and use the trails, and then upload their GPS log of
the ride or run to the ROAG website if they want to be included in the
The Karkloof Country Club, which boasts a number of innovations and
improvements since last year’s Sappi Karkloof Classic, provided a
platform for the Karkloof hospitality for the many individuals and
families that took advantage of the opening weekend of the festival.
The elite MTB Marathon stars will converge on the iconic 60km Karkloof
route on the final weekend of the festival window to decide the holders
of the prized titles for 2020, and the points towards to Quattro ROAG
Series powered by Momentum.
SUMMARY OF RESULTS
1. Keira Duncan 11:17
2. Andrew Houston 11:51
3. Matthew Green 11:58
4. Patrick Morewood 12:04
5. Omar Wilson 12:08 (Sub Junior)
6. Ian Perry 12:32
7. Stuart Waterworth 12:42
8. Cameron Morewood 12:49 (Sub Junior)
9. Lorenzo Lotz 13:01
10. Mackinley Daly 13:02 (Junior)
1. Sabine Thies 14:13 (Junior)
2. Bianca Haw 14:59
The Sappi Karkloof Classic Challenge
Starts Saturday 24 October and ends on Sunday 15 November
MTB Routes : 60 (R150), 40km (R120), 20km (R100) and Enduro (R250)
Trail Running : 10 (R100), 21km (R120)
Enter through www.roag.co.za
or by electronic payment scanned at the Karkloof Club on the day.
Times uploaded at www.roag.co.za
can be found at
Click to download the hi-res
Defending Sappi Karkloof
Challenge enduro champion Keira Duncan posted the fastest combined time
on the first weekend of the
Sappi Karkloof Classic Challenge.
Cam Morewood raced to a top
five finish in the first leg of the enduro competition at the start of
the Sappi Karkloof Classic Challenge three week window.
Karkloof local Hylton Turvey
enjoying the fabled trails through the Karkloof forest that will play
host to three weeks of the mountain biking and trail running at the 2020
Sappi Karkloof Classic Challenge.
The Staples family (from left
Juanita, Connor, Kaylee and Vaughn) were early visitors to the Sappi Karkloof Classic
Challenge on the first day of the three week festival window.
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