Team Demacon MaxWax Racing’s women’s outfit may have had a slower start to the season than the cracking pace they set last year, but they are confident their form will return as the year progresses.
With Demacon MaxWax yet to secure a victory in 2019, team captain and co-manager Burger said although they would not be able to replicate last year’s success they remained fully motivated to build on that foundation.
“Our team is exactly the same as last year. Obviously we’re not currently winning so that does dampen the mood a little. But I think we’re just more hungry now to get our [first] victory,” Burger told In the Bunch today.
“We still laugh and joke and we all get along very well so it has definitely not crushed us in any way.
“It’s almost impossible to have another year like last season. I think for us we just want to go to races to try and win or at least finish on the podium and make the racing.”
Burger described last year as having been “just one of those phenomenal seasons”. While disappointed they had not repeated that success thus far in 2019, she said she was pleased to see local women’s cycling becoming more competitive.
“It’s so nice to see more teams and riders on the start line and also riders who have come back into the sport.
“There are definitely stronger teams, which has definitely made it more difficult for us.
“But we set a high standard last year and always have the expectation to win. It’s not great not winning, but it’s definitely because there’s stronger competition.”
She said the team would be going “all out” to defend their title at next month’s Cape Town Cycle Tour, which was won last year by Le Court.
“Our game plan is definitely to try to win the race and at this stage it can be from anybody in our team.
“Kim is obviously the defending champ and she’s a great sprinter, but our set motto is that anyone can win on the day. It just depends on how the tactics play out.”
The team members complement each other well, both in and out of the sport, Burger said.
“We’re always there for one another, on and off the bike, which I think plays quite a big role. We’re like a little family.
“We’re not just teammates on the bike, but also friends off the bike.”
The team had also incorporated a development element this season, Burger added.
“We want to have the core key riders while also finding younger riders and enabling them to do what we do in the long run.”
The team has taken two junior riders on board for this season, Azulde Britz and Sonica Klopper, both 18 years of age.
From an administrative perspective, Burger said team manager David Pieterse was “very influential” in his involvement with the set-up.
“There are riders who wouldn’t be in the team if it wasn’t for him,” she said.
“We have such a great structure and David helps keep our spirits up. We go into every race with a plan and focus and we never have to worry about our bikes or anything else.
“He always has everything sorted. All we have to do is pitch up and race our bikes.”