The Cycling SA cup took place this past weekend(17/06/2017) at Cascades MTB Park. Cascades, being cascades, was a recipe for some interesting and intense racing.
The first major element of the eventful day came in the ladies elite race, where current South African Elite Ladies Champion, Mariske Strauss(OMX Pro Team), was beaten to the finish line, in a tough and exciting battle with fellow South African, Amy Beth McDougall.
The racing was tough from the gun, with Mariske setting the initial pace, before a change on lap 3 where Amy took the lead and never looked back. The 2 created a great spectator friendly race where everyone was kept on their toes and wasn't able to predict the outcome. Well done to all ladies that took part, was great capturing the exciting racing!
It then came the turn of the Junior men's event; which is always know for its tough and exciting racing, but had added excitement as ex South African Champ, Cameron Wright, who now resides in Australia and is the Current Australian u19 champion, flew over to take part and hopefully get his hands on some valuable UCI points.
The race did not disappoint the initial hype and excitement, there was some extremely tough and exciting racing that took place, however, all the tight racing took place well behind Cameron, who opened a massive gap on lap 1 and he never looked back. Cameron eventually finished the race with a convincing victory and some valuable UCI points that he will take home to Australia.
The final event of the day, the Elite Mens event, also did not disappoint. Much like the junior race, it was dominated from the gun by Alan Hatherly (Team Spur), who opened up a massive gap that just kept growing by each lap, and left the others to fight among each other. Behind him, there was some really intense racing unfolding; with for the majority of the race, 3 athletes fighting for 2nd to 4th. But former Cycling SA champion Philip Buys(Team PYGA Euro Steel) threw a spanner in the works. Philip, who had a puncture on the opening lap, which left him pretty close to last position, fought back lap by lap to catch up to the leaders.
No one could predict the outcome, until the very last meters of the race. The victory was pretty predictable, baring any mechanical issues to Alan Hatherly, but what unfolded behind him was less predictable. Again the odds, Philip had fought himself back into second place, which in my eyes was the story of the day!
It was a really awesome event to photograph, and I couldn't of managed it at all without all my Nikon gear. It managed to perform like a dream in some of the toughest conditions, I'm really excited to be shooting many more events behind this awesome camera!
To see more photos from the event CLICK HERE
Until next time