Not even the not-so-summery weather conditions could dampen the spirits at this year’s Jakkalsvlei MTB challenge and Jackal trail run.
Young and old came out to Jakkalsvlei Private Cellar to enjoy a tough but rewarding morning traversing the hills surrounding the tasting room and restaurant while family and friends eagerly awaited their return at the finish line. After the race, runners and MTB riders warmed up with a glass of Jakkalsvlei’s delicious Hanepoot while enjoying a scrumptious pizza.
The MTB riders were the first to depart and while the mud caused many “sticky situations” along the way, there was nothing but smiles as they crossed the finish line. First to finish was Theo Otto with a time of 1:19:19 and in a very close second place, Martin Cilliers with a time of 1:19:53 followed by Henri Meyer (1:20:05) in third position. The harsh conditions also did not deter the ladies and the first woman to cross the finish line was vet rider Welme de Beer who did so in a time of 1:52:16. Karen Roos came in second in a time of 2:17:58 with Maré Gardiner in third place.
The trail run event was dominated by the junior runners with this group taking the top three positions in the overall male category. Hyron October took first place with a time of 31:12 with Morne Francis (33:01) and Aushtin-Lee October (35:01) second and third respectively.
In the overall female category another junior runner, Linel Engelbrecht, made her mark by finishing first in a time of 35:23. She was followed a few seconds later by Elsje Barkhuizen (39:29) and Bianca Jordaan (41:50).
Although the conditions were not ideal, the first male runner in the 11km, Kei Heyns, managed to cross the finish line sub 1 hour with a time of 59:22. He was followed by Johlan Pretorius (1:03:48) and Riaan Schraader (1:14:56). The ladies followed close behind and Megz van der Berg took first place with a time of 1:14:17, with vet runner Heilani Streuderst (1:14:57) in second and Zani Smith third.
After an informal prize-giving ceremony, where winners were awarded a few bottles of Jakkalsvlei’s finest, athletes and their families enjoyed the rest of the afternoon at the restaurant celebrating with excellent food and wine.