White strikes and Smith reigns at Scottburgh MTB Race

The 2014 Scottburgh MTB Race, presented by Sappi has gone with the slogan 'Raw and Untamed' and welcomed a number of late entries for the various events but it was the much anticipated 42km marathon that started in blustery conditions in the South Coast town on Sunday and it was late-comer Tyronne White who stole the show in the men’s race whilst local lady Hayley Smith became the first person to defend her title when she walked away with the spoils in the ladies race.
It was a successful outing for Team Thule's Tyronne White who beat team mate Josh Nelson in a sprint finish to claim the men's title at the 2014 Scottburgh MTB Race, presented by Sappi on Sunday.

With White and another Kwa-Zulu Natal top performer in Tyron Bird putting his name into the hat it was always going to be an interesting match-up and the two managed to keep up the pace at the front of the race with White’s team-mate Joshua Nelson.

The Team Thule star made the decision that he was going to enter the South Coast showdown following a race in the Midlands on Saturday and used the logic that with a few multi-stage races approaching it was good to get in two days of racing but admitted that the fatigue was a bit of a problem.

Kwa-Zulu Natal rider and Quattro star Tyron Bird had to settle for third place overall after suffering a puncture and losing out on the end sprint at the Scottburgh MTB Race, presented by Sappi, on Sunday.

"Yesterday definitely took it out of us but likely all three of us who were out front rode yesterday so we were all on an equal playing field which was quite nice so it did make today interesting,” White said. “You couldn't just attack from the beginning and you had to box clever.”

The conditions were fair with a bit of a wind blowing but it was nothing that deterred White too much with the front group of three being well shielded.

Margate resident and Bell Equipment star Hayley Smith went back-to-back as she claimed the 2014 women's title at the Scottburgh MTB Race, presented by Sappi, on Sunday.
"It was a little bit windy out there but it wasn't as bad as I initially expected because we were fairly protected in a lot of the areas.

"There were three of us riding together, myself, Josh and Tyron (Bird) so it was nice that we all took a turn at the front,” a satisfied White added.

The race was a close affair with the top three working together to keep themselves clear of the rest of the field and ultimately it came down to a sprint finish to see who would take the overall crown along the beach.

"We started off at a fairly good pace for the first 10 or so kilometres, up until the hotspot where Tyron Bird put in a hard effort and so it ended with just the three of us.

"From there we had a lot of fun riding together and unfortunately Tyron punctured so Josh and I just rode on easily waiting for him to catch back up which he did and from there rode together and just left it down to an end sprint finish,” White concluded.

The women’s race was not as closely contested with 2013 champion, Hayley Smith, repeating her effort and becoming the first women to retain the title. Smith found the conditions tricky but made the most of her opportunity when she got away.

"It was pretty tough out there with the wind and the soft sand but I really enjoyed it and the conditions were tough but they were good for racing.

"There was a group of three of us at the beginning of the race but I managed to get ahead of them on the first climb and win the Queen of the Mountain and from there I got away from them for the remainder of the race,” the Bell Equipment star said.

Having soldiered away from the rest of the ladies field on Sunday it was a satisfying finish for her to cross the line first and she was elated with her victory.

"Being able to win the race two years in a row is really great, I am extremely happy with my ride today!" she mentioned excitedly.

The men's podium was made up of (from left): In third place Tyron Bird (Quattro), first place Tyronne White (Team Thuli), second place Joshua Nelson (Team Thuli) at the 2014 Scottburgh MTB Race, presented by Sappi.

A number of young and eager riders set off for the 2km intermediate race as well as the 10km fun ride at the 2014 Scottburgh MTB Race, presented by Sappi on Sunday.

Summary of Results - Scottburgh MTB Race presented by Sappi

45km Classic

1. Tyronne White 01:44.32
2. Joshua Nelson 01:44.33
3. Tyron Bird 01:45.44
4. Evan van der Spuy 01:46.13
5. Phillip Marais 01:47.05
6. Travers Pellew 01:47.19
7. Craig Russell White 01:48.08
8. Werner Moolman 01:49.51
9. Grant Langley 01:56.07
10. Simon Rollo 01:56.13

1. Hayley Smith 02:03.21
2. Julieann Hampson 02:10.06
3. Isabel Moolman 02:11.33
4. Candice Parker-Dennison 02:16.23
5. Tanya Nadauld 02:35.26

1. Joshua Nelson 01:44.33
2. John Cele 02:15.15
3. Luke Bester 02:25.48

28km Intermediate Event

1. Gage Hanson 01:23.18
2. Jean Dreyer 01:28.43
3. Jett Bradshaw 01:29.10
4. Richard Thompson 01:33.00
5. Mark Fourie 01:35.46