Young biker killed in crash at offroad enduro
THE first results for the 2016 SA Cross Country Championship ( SACC) for motorcycles and quad competitors are on the scoreboard after the opening round, the Vryburg Race, this weekend.
The second of the two 150 km loops had to be cancelled on Saturday after a serious accident involving Gislain van der Merwe, who died from massive head trauma in Milpark hospital. His family switched off the life support machines on Monday.
It was the first national race with in many years that saw the bikes run the same routes as the cars and Louwrens Mahoney, director for the SACC motorcycle and quad champion- ship and former multiple race winner at Vryburg, was satisfied with the outcome of the event.
Michael Pentecost ( Proudly Bidvest Yamaha) took the overall victory as well as the OR1 ( Open) Championship. The riders behind him had to eat some dust on the 150 km loop and he was followed by Botswana’s desert fox, Ross Branch ( Brother Leader Tread KTM) with Kenny Gilbert ( Kargo Racing Husqvarna) third overall and third in OR1.
Former SA National Off- road Champion, Altus de Wet ( BCR Arrow Yamaha) made a return to off- road racing to claim fourth place in OR1 with Ruan Smith ( Sherco Racing SA) fifth.
The quad riders started Sat- urday’s race behind the last two- wheeler with Dakar Rally hero and defending champion, Brian Baragwanath ( Proudly Bidvest Yamaha) off first. He had to settle for third place after he lost time due to two rear flat tyres.
André Park ( Yamaha) won the race, with Stefan Swanepoel ( Yamaha) less than a minute behind in second place.
This was also the Open Quad Class podium. Russell Ferreira ( Yamaha) finished fourth with Johan Oosthuizen ( VANS Racing Division Yamaha) rounding off the top five. In the Open Quads the top ten were Yamaha riders, Ruan Stander ( sixth); Dewald Theron ( seventh); Paul dos Santos ( eighth) and Wiaan van Wyk with Lourens van Rensburg finishing ninth on his Suzuki.
• The second round of the SACC for motorcycle and quad competitors will take place on May 6 and 7. This will be a standalone event in Dundee in KwaZulu- Natal, with the next combined event the Toyota Desert Race 1 000 in June in Botswana.
Brian Baragwanath ( centre) topped the quad riders’ podium, followed by André Park ( left) and Stefan Swanepoel.