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One of the events planned for the second day of the Southern Cross Schools Earth Day Festival was the MTB race which was scheduled for Saturday 20 April. Sponsored by Silver Wings Spur, this event was meant to include five different races, starting with the high schools’ race at 07h30. This first race got off without incident and the cyclists rode the 5km course on the school property and Raptor’s View Wildlife Estate three times to complete the 15km event.
Competitors were able to take part as individuals or in teams. The race was a little different to usual MTB races because not only did competitors have to ride the course, they also had to solve a nature-based puzzle by answering clues along the way. The winning team or individual was the one who arrived at the finish first with the correct answer to the puzzle.
In the first race the individual winner was Ryan Strong from Southern Cross and the winning team was “The Thrilling Three” consisting of Daniella Cowden, Jason Coenen and Dylan George, all from Southern Cross.
The second race of the day was the adult race, which attracted a good number of entries. By the time this race was due to start it was clear that Hoedspruit was in for some rain as darkness descended and thunder and lightning filled the air. As the starter set off the cyclists with a pistol shot, the first big raindrops fell. It wasn’t long before the rain was coming down in sheets and 60mm later all activities planned for Saturday were washed out.
It was later decided to hold the junior primary and senior primary races on Friday 26 April. A large number of children cycled in these two races with both individuals and teams taking part. In the junior primary race the individual winner was Llewelyn Rogers with Rachel White finishing second. The team event was won by a team consisting of Louis du Preez, Trystan Cary, Tapelo Stuurman, Kellen Gutteridge and Chloe Beretta. The second junior primary team home was Sophia Louise du Preez, Rachel Behne and Gemma Ferguson.
The individual race in the senior primary category was won by Christiaan Coetzee with Murray White in second place. The first senior primary team to cross the line with the correct answer to the puzzle included Nicola Cowden, Rebecca Behne and Chanae Pohl and the second team home was Brendan Taylor, Thomas Mayes and Aden Haussmann.
A special word of thanks is extended to Silver Wings Spur for their sponsorship of the race and to Bizzi Woodwork for making the winners’ trophies.
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