Eric Kros put in a dominant performance to win the junior men’s title at the Youth Festival in Hoedspruit, Mpumalanga, at the weekend.
The Grade 11 Hoёrskool Waterkloof pupil won all five disciplines – a cross-country race, road race, hill climb, individual time-trial and criterium – during the four-day event.
Daniel Knauer finished second, with Tlotlo Selala third in the U19 category.
“Although there weren’t many of the regular juniors taking part this year, I wanted to improve on last year,” said Kros, who finished second in 2018.
The Gauteng North rider added that he had attended all seven of the events thus far.
“I always enjoy the atmosphere and the opportunity to take part in so many disciplines over such a short time.
“Making new friends, competing with them, as well as new contenders, and enjoying the whole experience are what make this event something to remember.”
The winner in the junior ladies category was Hijke Coetzee from Mpumalanga. Both she and Kros also ride for the Performance Through Science (PTS) Junior Cycling Team.
Kros, Selala and Coetzee will be racing again this weekend at the Schools MTB League inter-schools final at Wagpos High School in Brits, North West.
This year’s Youth Festival was attended by riders from Gauteng North, KwaZulu-Natal and Mpumalanga. A total of 54 riders, aged from under 11 to juniors, participated.
The riders earn points for their province based on their positions in each event. The overall winning province was KwaZulu-Natal.
Next year’s event will involve only the road events and one other discipline, a team time-trial. This format enables young riders to be exposed to all the road cycling disciplines.