Sappi Karkloof Classic Trail Festival Media Release

 No: kc2209

28 May 2022

Embargo : None

Written by : Dave Macleod


Trail runners kick off Karkloof Trail bonanza

Karkloof Linda Zondi won a thrilling dice to the line to claim the overall line honours at the 30th anniversary edition of the Sappi Karkloof Trail Festival 21km trail run held in superb conditions in the Karkloof valley on Saturday morning.

The nail-biting end-sprint saw former winner Zondi edge across the line at the Marriott Karkloof Club just ahead of the defending champion Ayanda Ngcobo and Joe Maphumulo.

Zondi, who won the Karkloof title in 2019, needed his accumulated tactical experience to ensure he was never shaded in the critical run into the finish by his two tenacious challengers, before he could celebrate winning another Karkloof title, but not before the race officials settled concerns about the route that some of the front runners took.

A gentleman's agreement was reached that the result of the sprint to the tape would stand as the officials result, after it became clear that two of the top three had deviated off the race route for a short portion of the race.

The women's race was won by Chantelle Pennicott in a tactically astute run that allowed her to pull comfortably clear of last year's runner-up and current Quattro ROAG Series powered by Momentum champion Sarah Gray, who in turn was able to shrug off the defending champion Nokukhanya Memela.

The win solidifies Pennicott's position at the top of the ROAG series log following her win in the series opener in New Hanover recently.

The bragging rights in the shorter 9km option were snatched by Merchants Change A Life Academy runner Sandile Mbanjwa, whose fast pace from the gun set up a one minute victory margin over runner-up Thulani Skakhane, with Ayanda Malevu making up the balance of the men's podium.

The women's 9km race was dominated throughout by Rachel van Deventer, with Kayleigh Lindeque securing the silver medal placing and Hanna Newlands third.

The afternoon saw mountain bikers swarming over the trails in the Karkloof valley and through the Sappi plantations in preparation for the full programme of MTB races on Sunday which will also decide the national marathon titles for 2022.

SUMMARY OF RESULTS
Sappi Karkloof Classic Trail Festival 21km trail run
Men
1.Linda Zondi 2:00:30
2.Ayanda Ngcobo 2:00:31
3.Joe Maphumulo 2:00:32
Women
1.Chantelle Pennicott 2:14:24
2.Sarah Gray 2:15:15
3.Nokukhanya Memela 2:16:15

Sappi Karkloof Classic Trail Festival 9km trail run
Men
1.Sandile Mbanjwa 37:39
2.Thulani Skakhane 37:42
3.Ayanda Malevu 40:09
Women
1.Rachel van Deventer 46:26
2.Kayleigh Lindeque 50:09
3.Hanna Newlands 54:17

The Sappi Karkloof Classic Trail Festival 2022 concludes on Sunday 29 May. More info can be found at https://www.karkloofclub.co.za/events/sappi-karkloof-classic-trail-festival-2022/

Sappi Karkloof Classic Trail Festival 2022
Schedule of events:
Sunday 29th May
07h00 90km MTB
08h00 60km MTB
08h45 40km MTB
09h30 20km MTB
09h50 9km Trail Run
10h00 10km MTB

ENDS

Photo Caption Photographer Click to download the hi-res pic

Sappi Karkloof Classic Trail Festival Logo

 

Linda Zondi won a thrilling end-sprint to claim another overall title  at the Sappi Karkloof Classic Trail Festival 21km trail run on Saturday.

Tim Whitfield/
Gameplan Media

Joe Maphumulo in action during the 21km trail run at the Sappi Karkloof Classic Trail Festival on Saturday. He finished third overall.

Gavin Ryan/
QuickPix/
Gameplan Media

Chantel Pennicott ran away from the strong women's field to claim the honours in the 21km trail run at the Sappi Karkloof Classic Trail Festival on Saturday.

Gavin Ryan/
QuickPix/
Gameplan Media

Merchants Change A Life Academy runner Sandile Mbanjwa won the 9km trail run title at the Sappi Karkloof Classic Trail Festival on Saturday.

Gavin Ryan/
QuickPix/
Gameplan Media

Thulani Skhakhane leads eventual winner Sandile Mbanjwa on the 9km trial run at the Sappi Karkloof Classic Trail Festival on Saturday.

Gavin Ryan/
QuickPix/
Gameplan Media

Rachel Van Deventer was the comfortable winner of the women's title in the 9km trail run at the Sappi Karkloof Classic Trail Festival on Saturday.

Gavin Ryan/
QuickPix/
Gameplan Media

Over 300 trail runners enjoyed sublime conditions in the Karkloof valley at the Sappi Karkloof Classic Trail Festival on Saturday.

Gavin Ryan/
QuickPix/
Gameplan Media

Good times for the whole family. Over 300 trail runners enjoyed sublime conditions in the Karkloof valley at the Sappi Karkloof Classic Trail Festival on Saturday.

Gavin Ryan/
QuickPix/
Gameplan Media

Let me tak a selfie. Over 300 trail runners enjoyed sublime conditions in the Karkloof valley at the Sappi Karkloof Classic Trail Festival on Saturday.

Gavin Ryan/
QuickPix/
Gameplan Media

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