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SA cycle team stuck without bikes in Burkina Faso

By Mark Etheridge

Team South Africa’s campaign at the African Continental Road Cycling championships in Burkina Faso has been side-swiped by logistical issues and some of the team look likely to miss their events.

The 16-strong team of elite men and women and Under-23 and junior men arrived safely in Ougadougou on Tuesday and the championships were due to get underway on Wednesday.

Said manager George Cornelissen on Tuesday evening: “The team only arrived here today but without their luggage and bicycles!

“The championships start tomorrow and now we are stranded and what makes the situation worse is that the next plane will only arrive here on Thursday and we hopefully will get our stuff then.”

On the weather conditions that the SA contingent will face Cornelissen said: “For the rest, it’s quite humid and the temperature climbs to 37-39 deg Celcius daily.”

All indications are that more than 20 pieces of luggage are missing, including 12 vital bikes.

One of the riders affecting by the logistical hiccup is 2011 All Africa time trial winner and European campaigner Lise Olivier on Wednesday. “The boys missed the Team TT (time trial) today and I’ll miss the individual TT tomorrow as will the junior and Under-23 boys tomorrow.

“The next flight is in around noon tomorrow so hopefully the bikes arrive then. If not, the next flight, from what we can make out is only on SundayÔǪ”


4 comments
Johan Pretorius
Johan Pretorius

I am a supporter of the Namibian Cycling Team and I must say, what happend to our neighbouring cycling team South Africa is a bummer and not acceptable service from the airline responsible. One cant help wondering who paid who for this to happen. Nevertheless, I believe and trust the SA Team will come out on top. Good luck

Joy Smit
Joy Smit

Wonderful Mark, we are all holding thumbs that your team will do well and thankyou for answering. Joy

Mark Etheridge
Mark Etheridge

Hi there Joy, good news is that the plane with their bikes and the rest of their luggage arrived yesterday afternoon, so they're all good to go. Hold thumbs it all gets better from here on in -- Mark Etheridge (Managing Editor)

Joy Smit
Joy Smit

This must have been one of the greatest disappointments for the S.A. Cycle team, imagine arriving with great expectations of participating for you Country and your gear is still in SA or somewhere in AFRICA. My disappointment is just as big as the riders, how can this happen to top young South African cyclists?, who practice for hours to get to this stage, now what? Joy SMIT