MTN MTB Series Report Back

logoTHE NATIONAL MTN MTB SERIES LEG #4

CLARENS, FREESTATE 2 – 4 MAY 2014

And so another superb event concludes in Clarens. Sincere thanks to Advendurance, event owners and organisers of the MTN MTB Series in Clarens.

Thanks also to other contributors to the success of this event:A Massive thank you from the Advendurance Team to the entire Clarens Community for their support of this event. 2014 Saw their largest number of entries to date for the Clarens leg – 1825 unique entries with a total of +/-2200 riders over the 2 days. This event first started in Clarens in 2004 with 250 mountain bike riders so the growth over the last 10 years is evident! In a post-event meeting attended by Wessel van der Walt and Francois Theron (Advendurance), Paul Pretorius (Advendurance representative), Rodney Wainwright (CVC + Fire Association), Dawn Wainwright (Paballo’s Nursing Services) and Tammy Hancock (CTF), the future of the event in Clarens was discussed with the objective and vision to further improve, grow and enhance the event. To this end the date of the 2015 Clarens leg has been moved to 17 – 19 April 2015. Contributing factors to the date change are:

i.         to avoid the conflict with a usually productive long weekend in Clarens; and,

ii.         date change of another major mountain bike race event.

Other matters discussed were:

a)    The possibility of creating a ‘pedestrian only’ zone on the east and west sides of the square with access control for residents, business owners, employees and day visitors, thus providing off-square parking for event entrants. This matter will be discussed locally between relevant associations.

b)    Public amenities and problem areas associated to these facilities were discussed and it was decided by the organisers that they will continue to hire in amenities for their event.

c)     Electricity supply for the event will be discussed with the relevant authorities for the 2015 event.

d)    Extra accommodation – more riders would like to participate in the Clarens event but are restricted by number of available beds. The process of identifying available (existing or new) suitable sites for campers will be pursued.

e)    The possibility of alternating the start/finish line from where it has been sited over the last 7 years. Further discussion is vitally important with proposals/suggestions presented to the organisers.

 – RODNEY WAINWRIGHT and his WoF team – so much ‘behind-the-scenes’ work is done by this team leading up to the event involving trail cutting, preparation and maintenance. But it doesn’t stop there – at the actual event, the entire team together with the CVC team continue to contribute through marshalling along the course. The Advendurance’s representative man-on-the-ground, Paul Pretorius, complimented the WoF and CVC teams and thanked them for their professionalism, polite behavior and enthusiastic support and applause for the riders along the route.

 – PABALLO’s NURSING SERVICES: Dedicated professional and committed service to the event for the last 3 years. Thank you also to MTN for supplying a beautiful inflatable tent for their usage and convenience. The ‘Taj Mahal’ of on-site medical facilities! Henriette Hohne and Antoinette Earle work tirelessly and are sometimes called to handle very difficult situations, as was the case at this recent event. Their enthusiasm, focus and professionalism never waning. They are an asset to the Clarens family.

 – NG KERK CLARENS – Ds Sakkie van den Bergh and his team of ‘pannekoek bakkers’. Thank you for your enthusiastic support for the event – early mornings, long days and many many pancakes enjoyed by riders and their supporters alike!

 – JORENE RUHFUS (B You Day Spa) and her team of therapists were kept very busy, massaging some very weary bodies and tired legs!

 – PROTEA HOTEL for making available their conference facilities for event registration over the 3 days.

 – CTF TEAM – To the CTF stalwarts a massive thank you for assisting at this event – an amazing opportunity to raise some much needed funds for the CTF. Early mornings, long days (as above), hundreds of boerewors rolls, hot and cold drinks, friendly faces and loads of fun!!!  Special thanks to Nic Prinsloo + his team of Lukas and Wilson, Emily on porta-loo cleaning duty, Ollie Esplin for the use of his braaier and grids, Jorene Ruhfus for her delightful early morning giggle, Enrica Geyer, the Queen of Wors Braaing, ably assisted by Helga Oosthuizen on Saturday, Chris Pefanis, Jean Hubner, Franlize Zaaiman, Doug Hancock, Jonas and David (Tammy’s team). Thanks also to the following people who contributed on a large or small scale, to the success of the CTF’s efforts:

 – Golden Gate Highlands National Park for the donation of wood + firelighters

 – Horeb Butchery for supply and delivery of boerewors

 – Old Stone Bottle store for supply of soft drinks, ice and tubs

 – Clarens Village Grocer for the supply of buttered rolls

 – Les Thake and Bert van Rensburg for general assistance

The CTF has also been instrumental in assisting in several areas where help/facilitation was requested by the Advendurance team and has, over the last 3 years, been consistent in fulfilling its commitment to providing the assistance/facilitation as required.

 – Golden Gate Highlands National Park through Victor Mokoena (Chairperson CTF + Tourism Manager GGHNP) and John Martiens (CTF CommT Member and GGHNP Manager) made available Joseph Rantseke + 4 EcoTourism Intern students to assist over the 3 days of the event. Their contribution and work ethic was described as ‘superb’ by the event organiser’s Francois Theron who expressed his sincere gratitude for the provision of the 5 assistants.

Waterpoints were manned by the following organizations/people, a very important component for the success of this event! Sincere thanks to:

– NATALIE & STEPHAN MEYER: “our (Clarens) Brewery makes a point of supporting the event since we get supported so well by the cyclists. So we took 800 litres of water and all the paraphanalia needed for the water point right up on top of the mountain between Marius Naude & Clarens and manned the water point until mid-afternoon. It was fabulous!  And we also gave the event all the ice they needed….”

– PROTEA HOTEL – keen supporters and has manned a station each year.

– JOHAN STEYN, a farmer from Clarens who owns one of the farms the cyclists had access to. That was a real privilege.

– LIFE WATER:  manned  a point at Roodepoort Farm which is in the Clarens district, notwithstanding the fact that the owners are from Bethlehem

 

Thank you Clarens!!! Let’s put our hands and our heads together and unite in the efforts to grow and enhance this fantastic event for the years to come. Please diarise the dates for next year 17 – 19 APRIL 2015.

May 2014:  Article from Clarens Tourism Forum

Click here for more information on the Clarens Toursim Forum