Fouchee, who turns 18 in March, was wary of the wily experienced riders, but ultimately his closest rivals were also from the junior ranks.
“We raced against them for the overall title,” Fouchee said. “After the second stage I saw them as a threat.
“I saw them as a threat because they are a lot smarter than us [juniors] and they knew how to read the race. We had to look out for them.
“They are much more experienced than us and they played the game very smart.”
Other vets included Gary Beneke, Phillip Mudau, David Labuschagne and Chris van Rooyen.
Fortunately for Fouchee he created a big enough buffer in stage one, winning the race by some six minutes over another junior Dian Fritz, to ensure he would be able to maintain an advantage over the next two stages.
However, he said in the second stage the Bestmed-ASG team of veteran riders really started gunning for the leader’s jersey.
“After I got a big gap I thought I could just sit back and defend my lead by trying not to lose too much time.
“The Bestmed team went out to test me and they raced very smart. I didn’t really have any answers for them.”
But help was at hand. Vandergroup’s Fouchee then joined forces with his former teammate and friend, Travis Stedman, another junior rider.
“We worked well together until he broke away so that he could also have a shot at a general classification position.
“I ended up working for most parts of the second stage. It didn’t play out as I wanted it to,” said Fouchee, who could only manage fifth place.
In stage three Fouchee and Stedman broke away on a climb and in the end managed to beat third-placed De Klerk Jacobs by some three minutes.
The Pretoria local won the race with a final general classification time of 8:55:50, beating Stedman by almost three minutes and the first of the vets, Naude, by nearly seven minutes.
The Hoërskool Garsfontein pupil will next focus on the Gauteng road champs in Pretoria this weekend.