What an end to the season it was. Jonkershoek delivering four amazing stages of racing with the iconic mountain backdrop that could fool you for a second into thinking that you’re somewhere in Europe. The fun and adrenaline did come at a price though, with riders having to climb just under 2000 metres in total, as they ascended the eastern slope of the valley pretty much from bottom to top for each stage. Bennet’s Red, The Plumber, Armageddon, and the Double Black Diamond made up the all-star list of trails for the day, wrapping up a successful 1st year of the newly founded EWC series. A series that could not have happened without the sterling efforts of Dan, Harry, Rupert, Michelle and Jacques, and of course the title sponsors Tygerberg MTB Club and Giant Bikes.
On the ladies' racing front, Stellenbosch local Frankie du Toit put down the hammer from the start and took the honours with a total racing time of 24:58.486. Second place was claimed by ex-Austrian Denise Hartwig about 3.5 minutes back, with the third spot going to Suné Henning.
It seemed to be the day of the locals as Matt Lombardi claimed TSD and won every stage. Lombardi conquered the four stages in a time of 21:06.415, exactly one minute ahead of 2nd place man Juri de Bruyn. Round 2 winner Robert Starke managed to claim 3rd spot, a mere 5 seconds behind de Bruyn.
The event was well organised, the timing is becoming more and more efficient as the riders get used to the system and the organizers refine it. The stages provided a good challenge, so it felt like you had accomplished something when you got the bottom and had a clean run. The vibe was, as always, amazing, everyone was so stoked to be there. One of my marathon friends happened to ride in Jonkers on the day of the event and she was surprised at how happy all the riders looked and I think that sums up yesterday’s event - everyone ended on a high after a good day out at a well-organised event on amazing trails. It was also rad to ride in Jonkers, I ride there very often so it was pretty much a home race for me which is always fun. Jonkers never disappoints, it’s stunning, it’s challenging and it’s amazing to ride! Frankie du Toit | Queen of EWC 2018
Top 3 women:
1. Frankie du Toit - 24:58.486 (21st overall)
2. Denise Hartwig (BMT Stellenbosch) - 28:27.293
3. Suné Henning - 31:51.777
Top 3 men:
1. Matt Lombardi (Specialized) - 21:06.415
2. Juri de Bruyn (Ellsworth) - 22:06.135
3. Robert Starke - 22:11.542
Full results can be found here.
A big shout out must go to all the riders that attended the three EWC races this year! It's safe to say that Enduro in the Western Cape is back on track! Spread the word, spread the stoke and let's make 2019 an even bigger success.