- Amajita fine-tune World Cup preparations in Netherlands
- Haig celebrates comeback with fourth IGT Tour victory
- Sixth-time lucky as Van Rensburg finally savours SA title
- Is mighty Manyonga the world’s first nine-metre man?
- Mistry tames the nerves to nail victory at Wanderers
- SA boys bring back Nations Cup gold from Czech Republic
- Van Dyk fourth and motivated after exciting mass finish in London
- Olympic rowers for Arnold Classic Africa
- Haig hits comeback trail with a vengeance at Killarney
- Mabulu grabs bronze, kata team wins three medals in Madagascar
Impey back in the local mix
- Updated: January 25, 2011
In 2007 Daryl Impey made sure that people took note of the MTN Cycling team when he won no less than 15 races. The good news is that Impey will be back in ÔÇ£yellowÔÇØ this year riding for MTN Qhubeka. Both local and international riders should take note that Impey is a rider on a mission. He is going to ride to win because he has something to prove.
ÔÇ£I am really appreciative about the opportunity that MTN/Qhubeka has given me. ÔÇ£I originally signed a two year contract with Pegasus. Unfortunately our financial backer dropped us at the last moment (mid December) meaning my new team mates and I were left jobless.
ÔÇ£Pegasus tried to find a solution but the UCI declined. It was a very stressful time for everyone involved. With the news coming so late and everybody being on holiday not much could be done over the festive season and finding a Pro Tour or Pro Continental team is very difficult, the offers have come and gone and most rosters are full,ÔÇØ Impey said.
ÔÇ£So when Douglas Ryder, team owner of MTN Qhubeka offered me a place on the team, I did not think twice about accepting it. Riding for MTN Qhubeka is going to be an exciting challenge because I share Douglas’ dream of getting a South African team to qualify for the Tour de France. It is going to be tough but it is doable challenge.ÔÇØ
When asked if he was disappointed about not riding for an European team this year especially since he was riding for Lance Armstrong’s Radioschack ProTeam and in 2008 and 2009 for Barloworld, Impey said, ÔÇ£As a professional cyclist I have learned a long time ago that everything happens for a reason. One might not always at first understand why certain things happened but eventually the reasons become clear.
ÔÇ£In a way I think it will be good for me to ride for MTN Qhubeka this year. When you are riding for a big team you end up being the domestique all the time and very seldom get the chance to ride for a victory. My first big goal is to get good results at the South African Road Championship in Port Elizabeth. I will be going flat out to try and win the road race as well as the individual time trial.ÔÇØ
In 2003 Impey as an Under-23-rider became one of a select few riders who can boast about winning a road title and time trial title at South African Championships. He was also the 2004 Under-23 time trial champion.
As an international rider riding for Barloworld Impey managed to win the Tour of Turkey despite crashing badly in the final stage and breaking a vertebra in his back. Another highlight was winning a stage in the Herald Sun Tour.
Last year he had a lot of bad luck when he crashed in in Catalunya. It forced him to take a break which meant that he missed competing in the classics.
Impey recalled his crash in Catalunya as follows: ┬áÔÇ£We were coming down a very sketchy descent with a sharp left turn, with gravel on it, at the bottom of the downhill section. I was sixth and following the guys in front. For some reason my rear wheel slid on the gravel. I lost control, slid into a barrier and over the bridge into a river six metres below. I hit my head really hard, but my helmet saved my life. I banged my knee quite badly on the concrete pillar.”
According to Impey MTN/Qhubeka’s European stint from May to June is really important to him. ÔÇ£We will be competing in some of the UCI 2.2-events. Getting the chance to win international races is going to be a good confidence booster. I want to get my name back up in international cycling where it belongs.
ÔÇ£It is important that people realise that I see my involvement with MTN Qhubeka as a long term commitment. For me personally it would be a highlight if we do get to compete in the Tour de France and I know that played my part in making that a reality.
ÔÇ£MTN Qhubeka’s project about planting trees in the townships and helping young kids to get bicycles is very special to me.ÔÇØ
Qhubeka is a non-profit organization (founded by the ICT infra-structure distributor, Axiz) that raises funds for the donation of bicycles to children and caregivers in developing communities, who have no transport and have to walk long distances to school. What makes the project unique is that the bicycles are not merely handed over to the communities. Qhubeka finances about 75% of the cost of the bicycle, while the recipient has to provide or earn the other 25%.┬á This gives them a better sense of ownership and involvement.
The initiative has not only distributed some 40 000 bikes since it was launched in 2004, but it has also reduced the cost of children’s school commuting by 75% in the communities it services; reduced the sports infrastructure cost per child by 90%; increased micro-finance loan recipient earnings by 500%, and increased healthcare worker visits to orphans and vulnerable children by 400%
ÔÇ£To have a cyclist of the calibre of Daryl signing for Team MTN Qhubeka is a major coup for us. Having ridden for Team RadioShack last year, Daryl brings with him a wealth of international racing experience. As sponsors of the team, we are delighted having Daryl on board as his never say die work ethic and professionalism echo our brand values,ÔÇØ says Bernard Pieters, senior sponsorship manager at MTN South Africa.
Impey’s racing CV:
8th Stage 8 Tour of Austria 2.HC
10th Stage 1 Tour of Austria 2.HC
6th Prologue Tour de Luxembourg 2.HC
5th Stage 1 Tour of Murcia UCI 2.1
10th Stage 2 Tour of Murcia UCI 2.1
3rd Argus RSA
1st Overall Tour of Turkey UCI 2.1
1st Points Competition Tour of Turkey
1st Stage 4 Tour of Turkey
3rd Stage 3 Tour of Turkey
5th Stage 2 Tour of Turkey
6th Stage 6,7 Tour of Turkey
3rd Stage 2┬á Tour de Mediterranean TTT UCI 2.1
10th Stage 3 Tour de Mediterranean UCI 2.1
3rd Race 2 Giro del Capo UCI 1.2
7th Race 4 Giro del Capo UCI 1.2
2nd SA Road Championships
5th Stage 1 Settimana Classica Internazionale (Coppi Bartali) UCI 2.1
4th Stage 1 Giro del Capo UCI 2.2
6th Stage 1 Giro del Trentino UCI 2.HC
8th Stage 5 Brixiaia Tour UCI 2.1
9th Stage 1 Tour of Denmark UCI 2.HC
8th Stage 1 Tour of Portugal UCI 2.HC
3rd Stage 7 Tour of Britain UCI 2.1
6th Memorial Viviana Manservisi UCI 1.1
10th Opening Criterium Herald Sun Tour Australia
9th Stage 5 ITT Herald Sun Tour Australia UCI 2.1
1st Stage 6┬á Herald Sun Tour Australia UCI 2.1
2nd Stage 2 Tour d Langkawi 2.HC
3rd Stage 4 Tour d Langkawi 2.HC
3rd Overall Points Competition Tour d Langkawi 2.HC
1st Prologue Giro del Capo UCI 2.2
1st Stage 2 Giro del Capo UCI 2.2
1st Giro del Capo Points Competition Overall
3rd Stage 9 Tour d’Moroc UCI 2.2
2nd Stage 10 Tour d’Moroc UCI 2.2
1st Stage 11 Tour d’Morco UCI 2.2
1st ALL African Games Road Race Champion
15 Victories in South Africa
1st Moerbeke ÔÇô Geraardsbergen, Belgium
3rd Stage 2 Tour d’Qinghai Lake UCI 2.HC
3rd Stage 7 Tour d’Qinghai Lake UCI 2.HC
SA U/23 Time Trial Champion
Winner Stage 5 Giro del Capo,SA- UCI 2.2
SA U/23 Time Trial and Road Race Champion
Winner Intermediate Sprints Jersey ÔÇô UCI 2.2 ÔÇô Tour d’Qing Hai Lake, China