GMM&KZN Cup race#1 report by Stephanie Davies
Sunday (30 January 2011) saw the first round of the Greg Minnaar Mongoose Series at Cascades. A total of 69 riders entered, including quite a few new faces…
After an early week of rain, rain and more rain many thought that this race would turn into a muddy one, however, the sun decided to play along and was shining fiercely come race weekend, which meant that the top section of the course was as loose as it could get. The track was short but packed with fun and surprises for riders of all skill levels. James Bentley commented, that this was a track built for all riders. The aim was to encourage those new to the sport as well as challenge the top riders.
The start saw riders flying down an open off-camber section with a right hand corner that lead into a rock garden with a road gap at the end. The steepest section of the track led into a number of corners, step offs and jumps and exited onto parts of the bottom section of the World Cup track. Another long off-camber section brought riders onto a wooden bridge followed by the last rock garden of the WC course, followed by a step up, jump, two huge hip jumps and a final rock garden, which is actually part of the 2011 WC XC course but showed quite a few of the downhillers who was boss. If one had to choose one rider who owned that particular rock garden it would have to be Brad Illingworth from JHB.
Although this was a KZN regional, quite a few riders from JHB came down to ride a real mountain and James Morland and Brad Illingworth made it onto the podium; James coming second in Vet Men and Brad placing third in Elite Men and fourth overall.
It was a tough race. The first run ended in a tie between Tim Bentley and Travis Browning and a time of 1:31. Travis pulled one second off his first run time to secure the first win in the series with a time of 1:30. Tim Bentley placed second with a 1:31 followed by Brad Illingworth with a 1:33 in third, Kelvin Purchase in forth (1:35) and Simon Dinkelman in fifth(1:36). The top five overall went to Travis Browning (1:30), Tim Bentley (1:31), Tiaan Odendaal (1:32), Brad Illingworth (133) and Kelvin Purchase (1:35).