WINDHOEK, 21 SEP – BCX riders Nolan Hoffman and David Maree from South Africa finished first and second, respectively during the opening race of the 2018 edition of the Tour de Windhoek.
The Tour de Windhoek which now covers over 400 kilometres of racing, returned this year after it was revived last year following an eight-year hiatus.
The event started Friday and ends Sunday.
Stage one of the five-stage race was held on the Dordabis road, with male cyclists competing in the main tour and women in the Tour de Light.
The BCX riders, as well as ProTouch riders, also from South Africa, and a few Namibian riders including Drikus Coetzee, Alex Miller and Andre de Klerk broke away from the battalion with just five kilometres to go to their turning point about 10 kilometres before Dordabis.
Thirty kilometres before the finish line the leading pack created a seven-minute gap, but Hoffman was too strong for his competitors, breaking away with just a kilometre to the finish line, leaving the chasing pack battling the wind on the hilly road.
Hoffman clocked a preliminary time of two hours, 28 minutes and 29 seconds (2:28:29), with Maree just seconds behind him with 2:28:56. Reynard Butler from ProTouch came third in a time of 2:29:14.
The Namibian riders finished sixth, seventh and ninth. Miller, who rode for MBM, ended sixth in a time of 2:29:18, while Coetzee (Hollard) was just a second behind him. Team Kia Elite rider De Klerk finished ninth in a time of 2:32:11. In the Tour de Light, Michelle Voster riding for team Jaguar had a lonely ride, winning the race with a gap of more than six minutes. She clocked 1:58:03, followed by teammates Johanita de Waal and Irene Steyn who both touched the finish line in 2:04:47.
South African riders dominated the tour last year, with Steven van Heerden of Team BCX winning the general classification, while his team won the team event.
Van Heerden completed the tour with a total time of 7:44:28 to finish 49 seconds ahead of teammate Calvin Beneke (7:45:17), while Jayde Julies of Team ProTouch finished third (7:45:55).