Sappi Karkloof Classic
Challenge Media Release
Embargo : None
Written by : Dave Macleod
Youngster upstages the stars at Sappi Karkloof Classic Challenge
Karkloof – Twenty-year-old rising star Brendan van Eerden completed a
heroic solo charge to win the 2020 Challenge edition of the Sappi
Karkloof Classic MTB race in very hot conditions on Saturday.
The young star, who was raised in Potchefstroom before moving to Hilton,
followed his sprint win the Illovo Eston MTB Challenge last month by
out-muscling establish local aces Andrew Hill, Tyronne White and the
newly crowned Quattro ROAG Series champion Stuart Marais.
The specially arranged elite race was held on the last weekend of the
three week window designed for the Sappi Karkloof Classic Challenge that
effectively replaces the traditional May event that had to be scrapped
during the hard lockdown.
The young Team Absolute Motion racer set the pace at the front of the
elite race from the start, with Hill, White and Marais watching his
every move. At the first serious climb van Eerden upped the pace, which
only Marais could match.
However as they approached the technical Gauntlet section, Marais picked
up a puncture, which allowed van Eerden to get away alone at the front
of the race. Behind them Hill was battling with his seat post slipping
and was dropping out of title contention.
Tyronne White bridged back to join van Eerden at the front, but the
young Potchefstroom-raised racer responded immediately by charging up
the notorious Lebanon climb, dropping White in the process.
"Then I just concentrated on keeping the tempo up and making sure that
gap stayed open," said van Eerden, who raced the last half of the 60
kilometre outing alone in searing heat before raising his arms at the
finish at the Karkloof Country Club to claim the prestigious title.
Exhausted and dehydrated, the youngster said it was the hardest one-day
MTB race he had done.
"It is, by far, the toughest one day marathon anywhere in the country,"
he said, adding that it was satisfying to win the event against a small
field that included almost all the sports pacesetters in the province.
"The racing here in KZN is always proper! The guys are always on form so
I was lucky to win this one against a really strong field," he added.
White blew in the final forty five minutes of the race as the heat
started to affect the tired riders, allowing Marais to leap-frog into
The women's title went to Cherie Redecker, balancing her urgency to win
this title with sensible pacing and staying hydrated as the temperature
crept into the upper thirties.
Last weekend Karkloof local Keira Duncan
repeated his feat of the opening weekend of the festival by topping the
results in the Enduro contest.
He shaved precious seconds off his already quick descents on the first
leg of the gravity event to post an overall victory over Luke Dinkel and
Andrew Houston, with Beanie Thies showing good form to win the women's
class from Bianca Haw.
SUMMARY OF RESULTS
SAPPI KARKLOOF CLASSIC CHALLENGE 60km MARATHON
1.Brendan van Eerden 2:46:54
2.Stuart Marais 2:56:50
3.Tyronne White 2:58:58
4.Andrew Hill 3:03:55
5.Dean van Dyk 3:07:12
1.Cherie Redecker 3:47:54
1 Keira Duncan 10:46
2 Luke Dinkel 11:05
3 Andrew Houston 11:35
4 Omar Wilson 11:49 (Sub Junior)
5 Adrian Bam 11:53
1 Sabine Thies 13:34
2 Bianca Haw 14:37
3 Amber Cole 16:18
can be found at
Click to download the hi-res
Rising star Brendan van Eerden
claims the prestigious Sappi Karkloof Classic
Challenge title at the Karkloof Country Club on Saturday.
Brendan van Eerden leads the
front group of elite riders in the early stages of the Sappi Karkloof Classic
Challenge elite marathon race on Saturday.
After dealing with the brave
charge from Tyronne White Brendan van Eerden raced away alone to win the Sappi Karkloof Classic
Challenge elite marathon race on Saturday.
Covid Compliant congrats. New Sappi Karkloof Classic
Challenge champion Brendan van Eerden (centre) is congratulated by
second-placed Stuart Marais (left) and third placed Tyronne White
Defending enduro champion Keira Duncan posted the fastest time
over the two weekends of the
Sappi Karkloof Classic Challenge Enduro competition to retain his title.
Conditions of usage of
All photographs supplied and hyperlinked herewith may be used free of
charge, with full credit to the photographer and agency as provided. The
photographs may not be modified or retouched in any way, but may be
cropped to suit the layout requirements of the publications. The
photographs provided may be used exclusively for editorial purposes, and
may be reprinted in any newspaper, magazine, television programme or on
any website. These photographs may not be used for any commercial or
promotional purpose, including but not limited to posters, advertisements,
commercials, promotional email correspondence, point-of-sale material or
any retail promotion. Should such usage be desired, please contact us at
the details below.
Is this of no value to you?
This media release is intended for use by media professionals covering
this specific activity or sport. Should this release not be relevant you,
advise us immediately
and we will be glad to remove your name from
this particular database. It would be useful to us if you could advise us
which subjects you would like to continue receiving releases on.
For any further information, or if you
cannot access the images, please contact:
(031) 764 3017