African stars shine on day four of African Road Champs
Pietermaritzburg – It was the turn of the rest of Africa to shine at the Confederation of African Cycling Road Championships as El Mehdi Chokri of Morocco and Helen Mitchell from Zimbabwe walked away with the gold medals in the Junior Men’s and Women’s Road Races respectively, on day four of the event.
The Moroccan rider came into the race with a clear plan and with an undulating course his plan played out exactly like he wanted to and the course was well suited to his strengths which he exploited successfully.
Algeria’s Islam Mansouri claimed the silver medal that will go with his second place in the Individual Time Trial on Tuesday. Third place in the Junior Men’s Road Race going to Namibian Brandon Plaatjies who had to compete on a different bicycle on Thursday following the theft of his own bicycle a few days prior to the event. This did not faze the young rider who was impressive on his way to a podium finish.
The Junior Women’s race was also a ding-dong affair with a sprint finish deciding the winner on the day and eventual winner Helen Mitchell was surprised by her performance but was glad that the race panned out well for her and her team mate Skye Davidson.
Her team mate Davidson felt that they worked well together throughout the race and were tactically sound all the way through to the finish and although conditions were tricky she was proud of her effort.
“Myself and Helen had to work hard together at stages during the race to stay with the South Africans but we were strong the whole way through the race and just really glad that we could finish first and second,” Davidson beamed.
Frances du Toit rounded out the podium in the Junior Girls Road Race and added a bronze medal to the Individual Time Trial gold medal that she won on Tuesday.
The Friday schedule at the African Continental Road Championships will commence with the Elite Women’s Road Races starting at 09:30am.
The African Continental Road Champs will be streamed live on Thursday 12 and Friday 13 February (09:30-12:30) and Saturday 14 February from 08:00 to 12:30 on www.streamit360.tv.
Follow the conversation during the 2015 African Continental Road Champs on Cycling SA’s social media platforms using the hashtags #CACroadchamps #africachamps on Twitter (@Cycling_SA) and Instagram (Cycling_SA). More information, including the road closures for Wartburg and surrounds, can be found here.
Entrance for spectators is free of charge. More information can be found at http://www.cyclingsa.com/2015-african-conti-road-champs.
SUMMARY OF RESULTS – CONFEDERATION OF AFRICAN CYCLING CONTINENTAL ROAD CHAMPIONSHIPS – DAY FOUR
1. El Medhi Chokri (MAR) 1:43.43.584
2. Islam Mansouri (ALG) 1:43.57.454
3. Brandon Plaatjies (NAM) 1:44.22.325
4. Ahishakiye Leonidas (BUR) 1:44.22.656
5. Mohcine El Kouraji (MAR) 1:46.16.422
1. Helen Mitchell (ZIM) 1:23.31.569
2. Skye Davidson (ZIM) 1:23.31.936
3. Frances du Toit (RSA) 1:23.31.984
4. Lynette Benson (RSA) 1:23.32.193
5. Manson Swart (RSA) 1:23.32.416