Peach cel­e­brates G2C vic­tory

Talk of the Town - - News - LOUISE CARTER

EA­GER cy­clists en­joyed a nice, warm morn­ing last Sun­day in the fifth Buco G2C Moun­tain Bike Race which drew cy­clists from all over the East­ern Cape – and fur­ther afield.

With a bit of a wind be­hind the rid­ers, and dry of­froad con­di­tions, it made for a very fast race from Gra­ham­stown to Port Al­fred.

Com­pet­ing in his de­but event was Ja­son Peach, who from the start broke free from the group and sped away, not stop­ping un­til he crossed the fin­ish line in a time of 1hour, 47 min­utes and 25 sec­onds, av­er­ag­ing about 32.40km/h. Peach said the race didn’t ex­actly go ac­cord­ing to plan be­cause when he broke free from the group, he ex­pected the race favourite and last year’s win­ner Grant Daly to catch up with him.

“It’s re­ally a beau­ti­ful ride, but it was a bit of a lonely one,” Peach said.

“It was my first time in this race, and I didn’t know what to ex­pect. I had to dig for lines but it was a good ride,” he said.

Daly fin­ished not long after Peach in a time of 1:50:22 and sec­onds after him Bruce Camp­bell came fly­ing in over the fin­ish line with a time of 1:50:34.

An­other reg­u­lar face at the G2C is Lloyd Vos, who dropped two po­si­tions from last year and ended in fourth po­si­tion this year.

Camp­bell, who has done the G2C in pre­vi­ous years but did not fea­ture on the podium last year, said he had a great time com­pet­ing in the race.

“It’s beau­ti­ful and very fast. You can see the moun­tains and sea the whole time. He [Peach] at­tacked from the first mo­ment. I caught Grant and thought we would catch him but he was just too fast,” he said.

Daly said he would be back next year to re­claim the win­ner’s ti­tle and joked that he wished he had an ex­tra few volts in him. “I’m happy with the po­si­tion though,” he said.

A to­tal of 396 rid­ers en­tered this year’s G2C with the youngest be­ing Raye Mool­man and Gareth Cow­ard, both 15, and the old­est David Go­ing at 71 years old.

Ja­son Meaton, the cur­rent G2C record­holder, did not take part this year again as he was ill, but is de­ter­mined to re­turn next year to break his own record.

Rid­ers said the course was much faster this year as the ground was ex­tremely dry and with the ac­com­pa­ny­ing wind, it made for a fast de­scent after a mas­sive hill at the start.

Tracy Camp­bell, Bruce’s wife, was the first lady home and fin­ished in a good time of 2:05:25. Shan­non Kirkhoff from East Lon­don fin­ished two min­utes after her. She com­pleted a back-to-back race, start­ing early on Sun­day morn­ing in Port Al­fred and cy­cling back down from Gra­ham­stown to the fin­ish line.

De­spite a grad­ual de­scent from 643m above sea level in Gra­ham­stown to the 69m in Port Al­fred, cy­clists de­scribed the course as not the eas­i­est, with steep hills at the start and a tricky down­hill sin­gle track which had dried up and van­ished be­tween the dry veg­e­ta­tion.

The last sec­tion was a com­fort­able short sin­gle track sec­tion through farm­land and took the bikes off the coun­try road and into the back of Rose­hill Mall.

“The course is ac­tu­ally harder than be­fore,” Vos said.

“Thank you very much to Buco for be­ing such great spon­sors,” Kirkhoff said.

Pic­tures: LOUISE CARTER

LONELY RIDER: First time en­trant Ja­son Peach broke away at the start of this year’s Gra­ham­stown to Sea Moun­tain Bike Race and left his com­peti­tors as well as last year’s win­ner in the dust

BONDED THROUGH CY­CLING: Re­turn­ing rider Bruce Camp­bell fin­ished off in third po­si­tion this year and his wife Tracy won the ladies’ di­vi­sion

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