Cell C Arabella MTB Challenge Stage One yields a sprint finish

Professional mountain bikers Erik Kleinhans and Adriaan Louw were the source of much excitement during stage one of the 50km Cell C Arabella MTB Challenge in Kleinmond on Saturday, 23 April 2016.  Seen here:  Erik Kleinhans in action on the day.  Photo Credit:  Tobias Ginsberg

Professional mountain bikers Erik Kleinhans and Adriaan Louw were the source of much excitement during stage one of the 50km Cell C Arabella MTB Challenge in Kleinmond on Saturday, 23 April 2016. Seen here: Erik Kleinhans in action
on the day. Photo Credit: Tobias Ginsberg

Professional mountain bikers Erik Kleinhans and Adriaan Louw were the source of much excitement during stage one of the 50km Cell C Arabella MTB Challenge in Kleinmond on Saturday, 23 April 2016.

A sprint finish was the deciding factor with Kleinhans pipping Louw to the finish in an impressive time of

02 hours 11 minutes 30 seconds. “It feels strange to win a race when I was never really in the lead,” laughs Kleinhans. “Adriaan Louw, Dylan Rebello and Stephan Senekal went full blast up the first climb, but I kept my own pace. At one stage I was round about 8th or 9th overall. I caught Stephan on a section of the route that featured rugged terrain. I managed to catch Dylan on a technical single track section, while Adriaan was caught in the last 200 meters. The route was fun. I enjoy the rougher route because it’s real mountain biking. The Cell C Arabella MTB Challenge is not just about riding your bike though, it’s about socializing. I plan to enjoy a round of golf this afternoon. To save the legs I might consider booking a golf cart.” Adriaan Louw came in second, while Dylan Rebello finished third.

Adriaan Louw was in the lead for the majority of the race, before being caught by Kleinhans in the finishing straight. “Tomorrow will probably end in another sprint,” says Louw. “I sat on the wheels at the start. At the first climb I took a gap. To test the legs I continued to push hard on the shorter climbs. Dylan came through pulling hard, but later faded. At one stage I looked over my shoulder and saw Erik working his way up. We could see the finish line when he caught me. I think the shorter two day stage races have a big future as they’re friendly for both riders and supporters. The shorter distances are also much more interesting.”

A mere three and a half weeks after her heart operation, Jennie Stenerhag was once again in the lead in the women’s race. “This is my first intense ride after my operation,” says a delighted Stenerhag. “Taking the stage win is fantastic, but I am even happier about the way that I felt out on route today. The route was really nice, rocky and rough. I am looking forward to stage two.” Stenerhag completed the 50km Cell C Arabella MTB Challenge in a deserving time of 02 hours 31 minutes 50 seconds. Katherine Lennard came in second, while Carmen Buchacher finished third.

Event Information: Cell C Arabella MTB Challenge / Stage Two

Date: Sunday, 24 April 2016
 
Event: 50km Cell C Arabella MTB Challenge
Start Time: 08:00 (in batches 10 minutes apart)
Start Venue: Wildekrans Wine Estate
Finish Venue: Arabella Hotel & Spa
 
Event: 15km Cell C Arabella MTB Challenge
Start Time: 08:50
Start Venue: Arabella Hotel & Spa
Finish Venue: Arabella Hotel & Spa
    

EXCITING GIVEAWAY: One lucky mountain biker will go home with a spectacular KTM Ultra Sport 29er. The lucky draw will take place on Sunday after the stage. The winner must be present to claim his/her prize.

Trail runners are invited to join in on the action by taking part in either the 15km or 6km Cell C Arabella Trail Run Challenge.

Event Information: Cell C Arabella Trail Run Challenge

Date: Sunday, 24 April 2016
Start & Finish Venue: Arabella Hotel & Spa (Kleinmond)
Distances & Start Times: 15km / 09:00
  6km / 09:00

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For more information on either the Cell C Arabella MTB Challenge or Cell C Arabella Trail Run Challenge visit www.stillwatersports.com, contact Stillwater Sports on 082 991 0045 or email entries@stillwatersports.com.