Mompe comes top in MTB Kgale Challenge

The mud and woody ruts at the Verec-Fox Ranch Mountain Bike (MTB) Kgale Challenge did not deter over 100 riders from participating in an exciting muddy and wet race event held at Wharic Park on November 21.

Organised by Lifecycle Coaching and Tuition Academy, track conditions on the route were vastly different from the normal dry weather conditions.

Some of the riders, who were split into three start batches, even lost momentum in some essential parts of the race route due to the brutal nature of the race route and weather conditions.

It also cost a few riders a podium finish, including defending MTB champion, Gontse Lethokwe.

However, Junior Champion, Lebopo Mompe of Tsela Riders showed why he should be considered an upcoming consistent podium threat, with a 45km finish of 1:54:50 claiming both the junior title and overall winner of the Verec-Fox Ranch MTB Kgale Challenge.

The 19-year-old Mompe seemed to race through the muddy route effortlessly, using his mountain bike skills to tackle technical sections of the race route with ease.   

“It was a tough race but I pushed hard as though I was on a normal dry route race,” said Mompe.

Floating through the muddy tracks, Mompe said he had to slow down a little at some tougher mud-covered sections towards the Gaborone Dam.

“The area had paddles of water that sunk onto the tyre making it harder to ride,” he said adding that going into Mokolodi area, he had to keep on despite the tough and terrible terrain which had his whole view covered by mud.

On the other part, the race got underway with the youth and under 12s racing for 20km.

Myra Mantle clocked 1:26:23 for the girls section while Ibo Morapedi finished in 1:36 for the male youths.

The under 12s category, saw Rhys Meyer winning the boys race, followed by Simphiwe Potongwane and Braun Turner on second and third spots respectively, while Leah Bruwer and Lilian Bruwer finished first and second respectively in the girls under 12s category.  

Race organiser and founder of Lifecycle Coaching and Tuition Academy, Gobona Mantle said in an interview that the race was successful despite wet weather conditions.

She said riding on wet and muddy conditions should be normal for riders as it was the nature of MTB race.

She indicated that usually local races were sometimes postponed due to wet weather conditions and said that should not be the case.

“Although it was a tough muddy race event, it had some good single tracks which allowed riders to enjoy the route,” noted Mantle further adding that the route also had some compacted sands along the Mokolodi area, which made cadence easier for riders.

Proceeds of the Verec-Fox Ranch MTB Kgale Challenge race registration will go towards sponsoring four young girls at Lifecycle Coaching and Tuition Academy for a year of coaching and training as well as participating in competitive races.

Sponsors were Coca-Cola, Verec, Fox Ranches, Frotcom, Medlane, Rescue One, Cycle Base as well as Lifecycle Events and Timing. ENDS