Cycling South Africa has named the team that they will be sending to the World Championships in Ponferrada, at the end of September.
Reinhardt Janse van Rensburg, Jacques Janse van Rensburg and Jay Thompson fill the three spots available in the elite men's category. Both Jacques Janse van Rensburg and Thompson are both making their debuts at the Vuelta a Espana, as MTN-Qhubeka make history as the first African-registered team to ride a Grand Tour.
A notable omission from the team is experienced rider Daryl Impey. The Orica-GreenEdge rider has been suspended from racing after he tested positive for Probenecid at the South African Championships. Impey has not received any sanctions, but three days before the Tour de France the Australian team announced that both A and B samples had tested positive. He was immediately pulled from the team and was unable to ride the Grand Tour.
Louis Meintjes heads to Ponferrada, hoping that he can go one better in the under-23 competition. The 22-year-old made it into the break with Matej Mohoric, who now rides for Cannondale. The pair were able to stay away, but Meintjes was bettered by the Slovenian in the finale. As he now races for a WorldTour team, Mohoric will not be able to defend his title. Along with his MTN-Qhubeka teammates in the elite squad, Meintjes is about to make his Grand Tour debut at the Vuelta a España, which begins with a team time trial on Saturday evening.
Leading the women’s team will be Ashleigh Moolman Pasio. The Hitec Products rider showed last month that she is in good form, after she pipped Tiffany Cromwell to the final medal spot in the Commonwealth Games road race. Moolman Pasio will be supported by An-Li Kachelhoffer and Heidi Dalton, and could be a dark horse for the podium in the road race.
The World Championships run from September 21-28, beginning with the team time trial and ending with the men’s road race.
South Africa for the World Championships:
Reinhardt Janse van Rensburg
Jacques Janse van Rensburg
Ashleigh Moolman Pasio
Stefan de Bod (Non Traveling Reserve)