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Gearing up for the Kamberg Classic

Riders and runners can expect new and improved trails this year. Picture: Tim Foster/Unsplash

The Quattro ROAG Series moves to the beautiful Glengarry holiday farm in the foothills of the Berg for the Kamberg Classic mountain biking and trail running on the weekend of March 14-15.

The Fuel & Gas Kamberg Classic is a highlight of the off-road racing season for both runners and cyclists, with superbly-prepared trails in spectacular scenery making for a great day of riding and running. The 7km and 14km trail runs take place this year on the afternoon of Saturday, March 14, while the 25km, 40km and 60km mountain bike events are held on Sunday, March 15.

The ROAG Series adds an extra competitive edge to the event with riders and runners competing for a share of the biggest MTB and trail running series prizes on offer in SA.

At the opening event of the 2020 series last month, Stuart Marais and Christie Hearder won the mountain biking races at Wartburg to put themselves in the early pole position to claim the R25 000 prizes for the MTB series. Linda Zondi and Sarah Gray claimed the early lead in the trail running with their respective victories at Wartburg.

Christie Hearder won the mountain biking at the opening leg of the Quattro ROAG Series powered by Momentum. Picture: Tim Whitfield

All the top contenders from the opening leg in both trail running and mountain biking are expected to be in action in Kamberg, and it seems likely the tightest racing will be in the men’s mountain biking where Tyronne White will hope to defend his 2019 title. However, he will face a mammoth task to stay ahead of Marais and Andrew Hill, who was runner-up both last year and at Wartburg recently.

Up-and-coming

In the absence of many of the outstanding young up-and-coming riders who are competing overseas, these three experienced campaigners have dominated the local KZN racing scene since mid-2019 and there seems no reason why Kamberg should be any different.

Riders and runners will be expecting the same high standard of organisation as in previous years with the same top-notch trail preparation making for some sublime racing, but riders and runners can expect new and improved trails this year.

“The move from September to March last year meant the Kamberg Valley was looking spectacular for the race,” said course designer Gareth Sivright. “And we have been lucky again this year to have had some good rainfall which has allowed all the new single track to settle nicely.

“Basically we have pretty much reversed the routes from last year and added in a lot more single track and we believe it makes for much better riding and running.

Sarah Gray won the trail running event at the opening leg of the Quattro ROAG Series powered by Momentum. Picture: Gameplan Media

Big climbs

“Things are not easy for the 60km riders. They will ride most of the 40km before heading off on the extra final 20km and there are a couple of big climbs there that will test the legs of the top riders. There may be big climbs but there are some wonderful rewards for the effort with the final 10km including lots of new single track.

“We have also changed things up for the trail runners and the 7km and the 14km have quite a technical climb early on and then lots of free-flowing trail.”

The 7km and 14km trail runs take place on Saturday afternoon at 3pm, while Sunday’s 65km MTB race starts at 8am on Sunday morning, with the 40km setting off at 8.15am and the 25km at 8.30am. A free 3km fun run and ride starts at 8.45am on Sunday.

Entries close on Wednesday. – Copy provided by Sports Wrighte

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