This blog is about news, results and photos of events hosted by Chain Gang Events.
On the 11th of June the first event on the yearly Eden Spur School MTB League calendar took place at the George NMMU Saasveld campus.
The morning was freezing, yet it didn’t curb the enthusiasm of any of the riders. With somewhat muddy conditions, the track was open to ride before the event and many of the kids made good use of the opportunity to see what the day had in store for them.
It was a good opportunity to warm up, get input from their coaches, become familiar with potentially treacherous spots and where more technical riding would be required.
Although most of the track was existing single track through the pine plantations, built and maintained by George Hillbillies Mountain Bike Club, some additional track building was required.
Our hero to the rescue is Dr Jan Venter from the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University who took it upon himself to take the Eden Spur School MTB League to new heights.
Jan did a bit of research on the requirements of cross-country cycling tracks and also Cycling South Africa’s rules and regulations. With the help and contributions of Tippeton George a whole new section was added to the track.
It was his aim to raise the bar for riders from Eden district as he felt that: “The kids in Cape Town are riding these tracks regularly. When our kids arrive there for competitions they are completely out of their depth.”
When they started with construction of the gap-jump and the drop offs, the track took on a life of its own and parts like the vertical tree stump naturally became part of the track.
Of course there has to be an easier route available for younger or more inexperienced riders and the slightly longer B route was an option for anyone who chose not to make use of the shorter, faster and more difficult options.
Cross-country cycling is not just about stamina. It demands that riders think about their ride. With the vast amount of tree roots on the track at the NMMU Saasveld campus, everybody agreed that this is a challenging track that requires skill over speed.
The event was also very rewarding for spectators with the jumps and drop-offs being situated within meters of the pavillion and the start/finish line and it was clear that everyone enjoyed the event. You can view the results here!
It is without doubt that Jan and the track at NMMU Saasveld brought value to the Eden Spur Schools MTB League!