Congartulations to Craig van Heerden who finished his first S2B yesterday! Besides a slight detour along the shore, he had a great day out.
Press Release from Gameplan Media:
Mocke brothers dominate Men’s Health Discovery Scottburgh to Brighton surf ski ultra marathon
Durban – Dawid Mocke brought down the curtain on the winter surf ski series with an emphatic family domination of the tough 46 kilometer Men’s Health Discovery Scottburgh to Brighton surf ski ultra marathon, raced on a dead calm ocean that offered little assistance to the big field that took part.
Mocke and his younger brother Jasper timed their race to perfection, and make their break at the front from the big bunch as they approached the compulsory beach stop at Amanzimtoti.
“I have done this race often enough to know that it is a long way, and that the racing only starts at Toti,” said Dawid Mocke, who has now won the race four times in six outings.
With his younger brother happy to follow his lead Dawid Mocke caught a small wave going into Amanzimtoti that gave the siblings a fifty metre lead. “It was crucial because there can be carnage in the surf when a big bunch comes in together,” said Dawid Mocke.
Only the winner of last weekend’s Dunlop Surf Ski World Cup Clint Pretorius was able to stay with the Mocke brothers, but shortly after that he paid the price for doing most of the pulling on the long leg to Amanzimtoti, and was dropped off the front bunch. “When Clint (Pretorius) blew, he blew pretty spectacularly!”, said Dawid Mocke.
“The brotherly love thing ended about four kilometres from the finish at Brighton,” he added. “From there on it was every man for himself.” Dawid Mocke managed to beach at the finish on the Bluff less than a minute ahead of his brother, with visiting Australian racer Mark Anderson pacing himself well to clinch the last place on the podium.
“I am stoked to be on the podium with my brother,” said Jasper Mocke. “The race was just like our training sessions together. He is always giving me tips and advice, and I am happy to sit on his wave for as long as I can.”
“This race is sadomasochism!” chuckled Dawid Mocke. “You know when you get to the start in the dark and cold at Scottburgh, where the surf is always dodgy, that you are in for a very tough race, no matter what the conditions are like on the day.”
The women’s title fell to the nuggety Amanzimtoti star Tiffany Kruger, revelling in her local waters to post another excellent result ahead of Michelle Eder.
Nigel and Michael Stevens won the double ski race, finishing third overall, with the season’s on-form mixed doubles crew of Sean and Alison Uys crowning a successful winter with the mixed doubles title.
Despite the flat sea conditions, the notorious surf at Amanzimtoti gave the big field a hard time, many of them taking part in a new shorter marathon that ended at Toti. Several paddlers misjudged the surf coming in at Amanzimtoti and ended the race with broken skis.
DISCOVERY MEN’S HEALTH SURF SKI SERIES
Men’s Health Discovery Scottburgh to Brighton
1.Dawid Mocke 3:45.57
2.Jasper Mocke 3:46.46
3.Mark Anderson 3:51.56
4.Bevan Manson 3:54.39
5.Travis Wilkinson 3:55.59
6.Brett Bartho 3:56.07
7.Richard von Wildemann 3:56.11
8.Clint Pretorius 3:58.40
9.Shadrack Mkhize 4:03.41
10.Mark Mulder 4:03.42
1.Tiffany Kruger 4:25.42
2.Michelle Eder 4:40.00
1. Nigel Stevens/Michael Stevens 3:51.09
2.Gavin Searle/Quinton Rutherford 3:54.11
3.Brandon van der Walt/Chad Andrews 3:54.23
4.Marc Holtzhauzen/Werner Holtzhauzen 3:56.26
5.Luke Symonds/Neil Evans 3: 57.49
Mixed Double ski
1.Sean Uys/Alison Uys 4:08.55
2.Glen Trueb/Lindy Bradshaw 4:12.20
3.Nathlaie Veckranges/Warren Beuster 4:15.34
Full details of the series can be found at www.surfski.co.za
And Berg Results/press release:
Hank McGregor wins record-equalling sixth Berg River Canoe Marathon title
Velddrif – Hank McGregor paddled his way into the canoeing record books when he equalled Robbie Herreveld’s six victories in the Berg River Canoe Marathon by wrapping up the 2009 title in emphatic style, while the enthralling women’s race went the way of nineteen year old debutant Robyn Kime on another day of high drama.
Then outcome of the race was clouded in controversy as the race jury heard several appeals against the use of shortcuts in the river and portages that might have been in conflict with the race rules.
Starting in a massed start for the 56 kilometre final stage from Zoutkloof to the West Coast fishing town of Velddrif, all McGregor had to do was stay with the front bunch to secure his overall race victory. After a flawless day on a full river, McGregor sprinted away from a six boat bunch in the closing stages to cross the finish line alone where he celebrated his sixth title in style.
“This is such a special race to take part in, let alone to win,” said McGregor. “The obstacles and the sheer distances of each stage makes it the toughest race I have ever done. Ever since I was kid growing up in the Cape I wanted to do this race, and dreamt of possibly winning it.
McGregor also savoured the shared record with “King of the Berg” Robbie Herreveld. “It’s fantastic to share his record,” said McGregor. “Simply to be mentioned in the same sentence as Robbie is an honour and a privilege. Maybe he will make a comeback next year and we can race it together!”
His finish was more dramatic than anticipated, as he saw a five hundred metre lead that he had worked hard for in his solo charge evaporate as the five chasers took a short-cut on the long final loop in the river before Velddrif.
“For the start of the race, this sneak channel was banned,” said a clearly frustrated McGregor. “When I got to Oordraplek I double-checked with the race official, who told me that we had to stay in the main channel, which is what I did. I was very surprised to see the five boat chasing bunch suddenly arrive on my tail a hundred metres behind me at the finish.”
The full river also caused some anxious moments for the front bunch as they charged down the full river and across flooded vlies. “It was a bit nerve racking,” admitted McGregor. “At one stage we got stuck in a fence and had to break the wire to get free. We then ran out of water and had to carry our boats for two hundred metres to get back into the river.”
The second place for King is his best ever paddling result. “I am over the moon,” bubbled the Milnerton ace. “I have paid my dies on this race, taken more than my fair share of wrong channels, and had my share of admin. So to have it all come together like this feels very special.”
The women’s race has captivated the race’s followers for all four days of the ultra-marathon. Pre-race favourite Robyn Kime was on the back foot after a series of disasters on the critical first stage left her nearly five minute adrift of Milnerton star Lindi-May Harmsen. That lead was whittled down to fifty two seconds by the time the two women started side-by-side in the massed start for the final stage of the race.
Harmsen however made a critical error – her first of the race – by taking a channel that proved to be a long-way around a bend, leaving the door open for Kime to scamper away to claim victory in the women’s race, and to become only the fourth women in the history of the race to win it on debut.
“Obviously I am disappointed,” said Harmsen. “For a while I could see Robyn (Kime) ahead of me after she got a lead when we went over some fences, but them all of a sudden she was gone. But full credit to her, she paddled like a steam train today.”
McGregor and King paved the way for their Team Epic to claim the team prize comfortably, with fellow team mates Pieter-Willem Basson and Heinrich Schloms all finishing in the top five, ensuring victory over Solomon’s Team Roamer Rand.
The end of the race was dogged by some heated debate over the use by some paddlers of a portage at Rietdakhuis that had been disallowed before the days stage started. The very full river also created opportunities for paddlers to leave the river banks and paddle across vlies, often with no guarantee that they would be able to get back into the main flow of the river.
Pierre-Andre Rabie was the first Under 21 paddler to cross the line, finishing in sixth place, while Joseph Williams took the juniors title in 51st place overall.
The race also saw two paddlers race into a unique slice of Berg River Canoe Marathon history when they became the first paddlers to complete forty of these tough ultra-marathons. Andre Collins and Giel van Deventer both completed their fortieth races with hitch free final stages to Velddrif, where they both received heroes welcomes.
“This has got to be one of the best Bergs ever,” enthused Collins. “The weather and water has been magnificent – warm, blue skies and a full river. I had the pleasure paddling with Willem van Riet (who took part in the first ever Berg in 1962) on the third stage and we agreed that this has been one of the best.”
Collins was quick to congratulate Giel van Deventer when he made it to the finish and promised to share a “bottle of great twenty year old” with him after the race.
SUMMARY OF RESULTS
BERG RIVER CANOE MARATHON DAY FOUR
(STAGE TIME) OVERALL RACE TIMES
1.Hank McGregor (1:56.10) 13:22.54
2.Lance King (1:56.45) 13:25.58
3.Graeme Solomon (1:57.02) 13:32.04
4.Pieter-Willem Basson (1:57:00) 13:33.54
5.Heinrich Schloms (1:56.45) 13:37.27
6.Pierre Andre Rabie (1:57.08) 13:44.43
7.Ernest van Riet (2:15.32) 14:02.05
8.Edgar Boehm Jnr (2:15.32) 14:03.10
9.Andrew Birkett (2:15.33) 14:10.53
10.Cornelius Human (2:15.34) 14:14.05
11.Ryno Armdorf (2:19.39) 14:23.33
12.Nick Longley (2:19.38) 14:23.41
13.Mynhardt Marais (2:19.38) 14:28.44
14.Louw Van Riet (2:20.13) 14:33.06
15.Dane Sanvido (2:20.26) 14:37.28
16.regory Smith (2:23.09) 14:39.41
17.Roland Smith (2:23.08) 14:40.02
18.Daan du Toit (2:27.09) 14:43.37
19.Chris de Waal (2:20.14) 14:44.33
20.Willen van Riet Jnr (2:20.25) 14:54.55
1.Robyn Kime (2:28.12) 15:26.07
2.Lindi-May Harmsen (2:35.08) 15:32.11
3.Jemma Hofmeyer (2:28.53) 15:50.08
4.Angie Gafney (2:32.09) 16:15.34
5.Lisa Scott (2:32.56) 16:23.21
More information can be found at www.berg.org.za