Robert Cragg and Charles Mcfall (Team SALiRE) won stage one of the Wines2Whales Adventure at Oak Valley Wine Estate today.
They completed the 68km stage in a time of 3:23:15. Gavin Klerck and Lionel Murray (Freewheel Cycology) came in second in 3:25:12, followed by Frikkie Hartog and Gerard Dirks (Gedis) in 3:25:58.
“We started slower than the other teams and just picked the guys up along the way. The routes, trails, single tracks are awesome. Our goal is to make top three,” said Cragg.
Defending women’s team champions Lolita van Aardt and Simone Rhoda van Aardt (Team SALiRE Women’s) crossed the finish line first in a time of 4:01:10. In second were Michelle van Aswegen and Emma Pienaar (Pharmachoice Ladies) in a time of 4:11:07, followed by Caren Mills and Dawn Herbert (Rugged Roses) in 4:18:13.
“We were initially worried about the rain, but it was actually beneficial today. Simone’s riding has improved dramatically since 2015. She is really looking forward to stage two’s single track,” said Lolita.
Theresa Ralph and Hamish Knowles (Galileo Risk) were the mixed team to beat, claiming the top spot on the podium in 3:36:34. Philip Lambrecht and Jane Seggie (At Last) took second in 3:37:17, followed by Alan van Schoor and Jenny Close (Cycles Direct) in 3:54:15
“Today’s stage was lovely, fast and flowing. I am happy that the portage section is over. Our goal will be to take the mixed team title,” said Ralph.
Stage two will start and finish at Oak Valley Wine Estate and will take riders on a 64km journey with a climb of 1 400m.