Trailseeker Lionman lives up to its wild reputation

Women's podium (left to right) Theresa Ralph, Amy Beth McDougall, Vanessa Bell Photo Credit: ZC Marketing Consulting

Women’s podium (left to right) Theresa Ralph, Amy Beth McDougall, Vanessa Bell
Photo Credit: ZC Marketing Consulting

South African marathon champion, Max Knox and African marathon champion, Amy Beth McDougall, won the men and women’s titles respectively at the Nissan TrailSeeker Lionman mountain bike race near Bela Bela at the weekend.

Knox (Valencia) clocked a time of 2 hours 24 minutes 16 seconds for the marathon event, which was just short of 70km. He was followed across the line by Hein Engelbrecht (Valencia) five minutes later, with Arno du Toit (SCOTT LCB Factory Racing) rounding out the podium.

In the women’s race, McDougall’s (Valencia) winning time of 2:49:31 was six minutes faster than that of runner-up, Theresa Ralph (Galileo Risk). Vanessa Bell completed the podium places.

Exceptional organisation, good weather and the truly African wildlife venue, made the opening round of the Gauteng Nissan TrailSeeker Series a memorable one.

A total of 2700 participants across four distances enjoyed the opportunity to ride through the wild bushveld at the base of the Waterberg mountain range. With the entire event taking place within the Mabalingwe Game Reserve, there was an additional air of excitement.

A number of riders saw wide range of the game in the reserve. Some riders reported seeing hyena and elephant and some exceptionally lucky riders spotted a leopard.

“Compliments to the organisers, who presented an almost perfect race. Markings were excellent and you had well briefed marshals at all points. The venue was lovely too,” wrote participant, Frans Verwoerd, on Facebook.

“Yesterday’s race was one of the best mountain bike races I have done. I will definitely be back next year. The event was very well organised,” wrote participant, Netto Smith, on Facebook.

Round 2 of the Nissan TrailSeeker Gauteng Series, the Hazeldean edition, takes place on 9 July 2016 at Curro College, Hazeldean, Pretoria East. To enter, or for more information, visit

2016 Nissan TrailSeeker Series, Gauteng
Round 1, Lionman, Mabalingwe, 28 May 2016
Leading results
Overall men – 70km marathon:
1 Max Knox 2:24:16
2 Hein Engelbrecht 2:29:12
3 Arno du Toit (SCOTT LCB Factory Racing) 2:30:59
4 Gawie Combrinck (Team NAD) 2:31:00
5 Alan Gordon 2:33:55
6 Wade Prinsloo 2:37:00
7 William Mapogo (Kargo) 2:39:11
8 Pierre Smith 2:40:54
9 Martien Venter 2:41:01
10 Fanie Venter 2:41:41

Overall women – 70km marathon:
1 Amy Beth McDougall (Valencia) 2:49:31
2 Theresa Ralph (Galileo Risk) 2:56:36
3 Vanessa Bell (Bells Cycling) 2:59:35
4 Maricel Bekker 3:02:54
5 Tamaryn Kietzmann (Complete Cyclist) 3:04:45
6 Mia van Rooyen 3:11:06
7 Michelle Benson 3:13:00
8 Johandri Leicester 3:13:17
9 Chantal Haynes 3:14:17
10 Janine Muller 3:15:24

Overall male – 40km half-marathon
1 Henry Leibenberg 01:21:53
2 Wessel Botha 01:21:54
3 Marc Oliver Pritzen 01:21:56

Overall female – 40km half-marathon
1 Azulde Britz 1:35:12
2 Odette Guy 1:35:15
3 Nicola van der Walt 1:36:36

For full results and Nissan TrailSeeker Series standings, visit