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Teagan races back home

KwaZulu-Natal’s BMX flyer Teagan O’Keeffe is all set to return home from her training base in Aigle, Switzerland shortly to carry the hopes of her nation at the UCI BMX Supercross in Pietermaritzburg on 8-9 April.

With South Africa’s greatest title hope Sfiso Nhlapo ruled out of the competition due to a knee injury, as the only other local rider to have medalled at last year’s UCI BMX World Champs, O’Keeffe can anticipate massive expectations from her many local fans at the opening leg of the 2011 World Cup circuit.

ÔÇ£I am super excited to race in Pietermaritzburg again! The energy you get from your home crowd can’t be put into words. You are just given such an adrenaline rush from hearing them scream for you,ÔÇØ said O’Keeffe.

ÔÇ£I am primarily training for the Olympics at the moment and I’ve been doing a lot of base training recently so we’ll have to see just how fast I’ll be, but it will all count in terms of race experience in the long run,ÔÇØ she added.

O’Keeffe has spent the past six weeks at the World Cycling Centre, Switzerland as part of her pathway towards achieving her Olympic dream, however there was just no way she was about to miss the opportunity to perform on an international stage in front of her home crowd for the second time in just eight months. Our top junior track cyclist, Bernard Esterhuizen, is also based at the same centre

.ÔÇ¿ÔÇ¿ÔÇ£For as long as I live I will never forget the crowd support when I won the Junior Elite Cruiser race at the Pietermaritzburg Worlds last year. There is nothing better than to perform on home soil and especially being South African, our crowds are the best in the world!ÔÇØ said O’Keeffe.

The schoolgirl from Thomas More College in Kloof last year, has had to step up another gear as she enters the tough open Elite Women senior category.ÔÇ¿ÔÇ¿ÔÇ£I am quite a bit smaller than most of the woman but we are working on that. Some serious squat sessions are in my near future!ÔÇØ she chuckles.ÔÇ¿ÔÇ¿ÔÇ£

The plan is that by 2016 I will be at my peak so that is definitely my goal and focus at this stage but I’m very excited to be racing on home soil again,ÔÇØ she added.

The UCI BMX Supercross World Cup takes place at Alexander Park, Pietermaritzburg on 8 and 9 April 2011.


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