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Freyer grabs lead after Coetzee’s bike leaves him in the lurch

Freyer grabs lead after Coetzee’s bike leaves him in the lurch

Martin Freyer took the gold in last weekend’s Ugab Terrace XCM where some 150 riders competed in the fifth race in this year’s Gravel & Dirt MTB Marathon Series. The first women to cross the finishing line was Michelle Vorster, a mere 8 minutes and 43 seconds after Freyer.

From the start of this tough race, the battle was between Drikus Coetzee and Xavier Papo among the men, and between Vorster and Irene Steyn among the women.

Coetzee developed a technical problem at the 40km mark, forcing him to drop back. Coming around the corner leading to the finishing stretch Freyer was in the lead with Papo fighting hard to catch the young rider, to no avail. Freyer crossed the line with a time of 2:31:41, a split second ahead of Papo.

Vorster, who suffered a terrible fall and did not finish the Africa Safari Lodge MTB Festival, came back stronger than ever with a time of 2:40:02 for her first place, a staggering 20 minutes ahead of Irene Steyn in second place with a time of 3:00:13 and Michelle Doman with 3:02:24. After Saturday’s come-back performance, Vorster convincingly showed why she is considered one of the best female MTB athletes in Namibia.

Coetzee has now fallen to second place in the overall rankings behind Papo who leads by 10 points.
Steyn maintains her first place ranking ahead of Doman, with Lelani Swart going strong in third place over all.

This coming weekend the riders head to Okahandja for the MTB Dirt Attack, comprising both 70km and 40km MTB courses. There will also be a 21km and 10km trail run for the running enthusiasts. The race takes place on Saturday 29 July. The MTB Marathon Series is sponsored by Hollard.

Sophienhof Lodge played host to the Ugab Terrace XCM, the fith race in this year’s Gravel & Dirt MTB Marathon Series. 150 riders lined up for the start of what would be an exhilarating race through spectacular country. Photograph by Charl du Preez.



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Sport Contributor

The Economist does not have a dedicated sport reporter. This designation is used for several contributors who want their sport stories in the Economist. Experience has taught us that companies usually want their sport sponsorships published prominently, being the reason for a sports category. It now also carries general sport items but only those with direct Namibian relevance. - Ed.