Mpumalanga teams at the Spur Schools MTB Finals

A field of 400 mountain bike riders representing 40 schools from across South Africa as well as a team from Namibia, Zimbabwe and Zambia competed for the coveted Spur Schools Mountain Bike League Championship trophy.

A total of 61 schools participated in the Mpumalanga leg of the Spur Schools MTB League this year in an attempt to qualify for the national finals at Bekker School.

The Spur Schools Mountain Bike league – a joint initiative between Spur Steak Ranches and trail advocacy group Amarider, recorded stratospheric growth during the 2015 season with more than 400 schools and 10 000 competing nationwide.

According to league organizer, Meurant Botha stated that it was encouraging to see the increasing number of schools that have adopted mountain biking as an official school sport. “Schools are taking mountain bike riding to the next level through coaching clinics and high performance training camps, while constantly introducing new riders to the sport. On grass roots levels various rider development programmes have been implemented around the country”, said Botha.

He continue saying none of this would have been possible without the vision and commitment of the Spur Group who have invested over R7m into the league and the development of mountain biking as a school sport since 2009. “The renewed 3-year sponsorship contract that will run until 2017 does not only bode well for the future of the league, but for mountain bike riding as a sporting discipline,” He said.

The top five performances in the mixed team category saw Menlopark scoring an impressive 124 points for a comfortable win with Potchefstroom Gimnasium second with 100 points and Midstream College taking another podium position finishing third with 86 points.

The Mpumalanga teams represented at the Spur Schhols MTB Finals were Hoërskool Lydenburg and the bikkers were Mignon Black, Sune Booysen, Constant Furstenberg, Keegan Clark, Joshua Schülz, Donald Hlase, Bongani Ngwana, Stephnie Fritz, Nathan Kurensky, Rikus Booysen, Kaylee Lindeque and Henyo Kruger.

From Uplands College, bikkers were Andreas Kuhn, Kirsty Shuttleworth, Tamryn Hawley, Ryan Terry, Abigail Alexander and Kyla Hamer.

From Nelspruit High School, bikkers were Sisters Mandie and Monique Swart, Armand Lombard, Mike Odendaal, Ruben Helberg and Reyno Beukes.

From Secuda High Schooland the bikkers were Marnique de Swart, Stehan Muller, Bernard Henrico, Daniel van Heerden, Jandre Stander and Reynardt Engelbrecht.
Category winners Zandri Strydom (Cambridge Home School), Luchelle Phillips and Rickardo Broxham (Ermelo Christian School) will be part of the Mpumalanga provincial team.

South African Schools Cycling (SASC) headed up by Deon Steyn, as national governing body of the sport, the strong network of regional co-coordinators, as well as increased involvement from schools is playing a key role in getting mountain biking established as a main stream school sport.

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