Cycling South Africa crowned the 2013 South African marathon national champions in perfect Lowveld winter weather conditions at Induna Adventures in Hazyview, Mpumalanga.
National championship titles were up for grabs across all the age categories, for the main elite event, as well as for the junior, youth, sub veteran, veteran, masters and grand masters events. All categories cycled on the same route, although the distances were altered to provide the correct race route for the various categories.
The elite men and women were required to race over distances of 112km and 73km respectively. The classy, talented fields built momentous anticipation for their followers and families, as there were a host of potential winners at any point during the race. The winner being decided right at the end.
A tactical race ensued for the men, which saw the lead group change on several occasions. Max Knox (Specialized), Lourens Luus (Team RE:CM) and Kevin Evans (FedGroup-Itec) were leading for most of the first loop of approximately 40km, but they were reeled in by the determined chasing group.
The top names of Waylon Woolcock and Erik Kleinhans (both Team RE:CM), Brandon Stewart and Neil Macdonald (both FedGroup-Itec), Darren Lill (Cannondale Blend), Philip Buys (Scott), Nico Bell and Gawie Combrinck (both Team Westvaal Columbia) and James Reid (sponsored by Trek and Craft) all regrouped with Knox, Luus and Evans.
By the time they reached the second technical zone situated at 74km, Luus, Knox, Lill, Reid, Bell, Evans, Stewart and Buys were working hard at the front and had managed to place a significant space between themselves and the splintered chasing pack.
Coming into the final kilometres of the 112km race, Evans, Bell and Reid were out in front, and it was under 23 cross country racer James Reid who managed to secure the victory for the SA Marathon Championship title in a time of four hours, 40 minutes and 36 seconds. Nico Bell finished in second place (4:41:08) with Kevin Evans third (4:41:41).
London Olympic road cyclist Robyn de Groot, who has recently turned to mountain biking, won the elite women’'s 73km race. De Groot put on a solid performance to take the victory in three hours, 33 minutes and 56 seconds. Local Lowveld rider Samantha Sanders (Valencia) crossed the line in second place (3:38:25) with cross country Olympian Candice Neethling (BMC-SA) rounding out the podium less than a minute behind (3:38:57).
|#||Rider Name (Country) Team||Result|
|1||James Reid (RSA)||4:40:36|
|2||Nico Bell (RSA)||0:00:32|
|3||Kevin Evans (RSA)||0:01:05|
|4||Darren Lill (RSA)||0:01:58|
|5||Max Knox (RSA)||0:02:35|
|6||Lourens Luus (RSA)||0:04:44|
|7||Matthys Beukes (RSA)||0:05:18|
|8||Brandon Stewart (RSA)||0:06:41|
|9||Charles Keey (RSA)||0:08:17|
|10||Waylon Woolcock (RSA)||0:10:11|
|#||Rider Name (Country) Team||Result|
|1||Robyn De Groot (RSA)||3:33:56|
|2||Samantha Sanders (RSA)||0:04:29|
|3||Candice Neethling (RSA)||0:05:01|
|4||Yolandi Du Toit (RSA)||0:12:14|
|5||Janine King (RSA)||0:12:47|
|6||Yolande Speedy (RSA)||0:14:56|
|7||Nicci Grobler (RSA)||0:29:09|
|8||Renthea Boshoff (RSA)||1:47:17|
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