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Wins for Erhard, Andrea
- Updated: October 12, 2011
By Mark Etheridge
Erhard Wolfaardt and Andrea Steyn showed the hottest form at Hartbeespoort, venue for the second leg of the BSG Energade triathlon series.
It was Steyn’s second series win on the trot and Wolfaardt improved on his second spot after the opening leg of the series at Roodeplaat Dam, Pretoria, the previous week where Richard Murray ran off with the spoils.
Wolfaardt’s winning time was just five seconds over the hour mark with Namibia’s Abrahm Louw 33sec adrift and Rudolf Naude third in 61:09.
The cycle leg was somewhat longer than usual, around 25km compared to the usual 20km and at T2 ahead of the final 5km run, it was a bunch of around eight racers.
With Murray away in Mexico and racing to his best yet World Cup finish of second spot on the same day, if Wolfaardt was in contention at the start of the run it was virtually a done deal that he would win. And so it proved as he dipped under the 15min mark for the run (14:48).
The All Africa Games champion told Road to London 2012 this week: “I’m obviously very happy to have won the race, it shows my form is coming along nicely and I should get stronger as the series goes on.
“I had a comfortable swim in the interesting canal swim, exiting the water just behind the lead swimmers. I’m still to find my legs on the bike but nonetheless had a strong solid 25km bike, working well with Abraham [Louw], Theo [Blignaut], Henri [Schoeman] and Rudolf [Naude]. We managed to clock a fast 36min ride on the day.
“It was all going to come down to the run once again, and fortunately for me I knew I had the fastest legs in my bike pack. I struggled a bit to get into my stride at the start of the run, but manage to quickly settle into a stride and open a good 30sec lead by the end of the 5km. This will certainly give me some good confidence going into the rest of the series,” said the Mr Price athlete.
Pretoria’s Steyn, second to Carlyn Fischer at All Africa Games, had no thoughts of second at this race. It was just her and Riana de Lange who started the run together and she clocked 17:57 for the 5km to end with a winning time of 69:36. De Lange was second in 71:39. Only Rosalyn Lauren was quicker on the run leg with a 17:36.
Said the women’s champion: “I had an awesome race. The new venue was great and swimming in the channels was something new to all of us. I managed a great swim [non-wetsuit] and get out with the front bunch. The cycle was a bit longer which suited me. I broke away during the first 3km of the bike and Riana managed to come with me. We rolled through and shared the workload.”
The two opened a 2min lead on the second pack which consisted of Laurens, Carla van Huysteen and Steyn’s BSG team-mate Vicky van der Merwe.
“Carlyn Fischer [All Africa Games triathlon champion}, Robyn Williams, Kim Batson and Taylor Glover were still further back and I ended up managing to have a relatively easy run. I was very happy with my second win of the series.”
The country’s elite athletes now head off to Potchefstroom for this week’s third leg of the series and the sobering news for any prospective women’s winners is that Steyn’s team-mate Kate Roberts, our top international competitor last your, will soon be joining the series.