Shifty conditions greeted the Boardwalk Hobie 16 Nationals fleet on Saturday 22 March 2014 - the 3rd and 2nd last day of sailing. After no sailing on the first day in Port Elizabeth the shifty conditions presented a challenge for Race Officer Doug Allison who had his mark laying crews shifting the course as the wind swung from North to North West to West to South West where it settled for the day. Four races were sailed in winds increasing from 7 to 22 knots with the last race completed just as the wind increased to over 25 knots at 4:00 pm. A short chop and decent wind made for some exhilarating sailing as Blaine and Roxanne Dodds reveled in the strong conditions to draw level with William and Lucinda Edwards on 12 points each but placed first by virtue of their four 1st places over the 8 races sailed so far. The discard has kicked in and helped Andrew and Angela Ward to move into 3rd place on 32 points - a scant one point ahead of Belinda and Ryan Hayward on 33 points. With one day to go the battle royal will be for 1st and 2nd place and 3rd and 4th. The top three finishers overall on Day 3: William and Lucinda Edwards - Knysna Yacht Club on 12 points Blaine and Roxanne Dodds - Knysna Yacht Club on 12 points Andrew and Angela Ward - Algoa Bay Yacht Club on 32 points. Photos: Andrew Fourie and Chad Bilsbury sailing for LDYC and currently in 9th place. Mark Kopel and Laura Ilgner sailing for LDYC and currently in 26th place. Blaine and Roxxane Dodds sailing for KYC and currently in 1st place. All Photo's credit: Alan Straton Author: Alan Straton from ABYC. No of Images Uploaded: Three More Info link: http://abyc.co.za Twitter: Facebook: Images: For high res version/s of Three image/s please contact: ABYC. Blaine and Roxxane Dodds sailing for KYC and currently in 1st place.. Photo by: Alan Straton . Photo by: Mark Kopel and Laura Ilgner sailing for LDYC and currently in 26th place. Andrew Fourie and Chad Bilsbury . . .
Mountain bikers who sign up on April 1 for this year's FedGroup Berg & Bush can look forward to some radical route changes, organisers have announced. The eighth edition of the popular stage race takes place near Winterton in the Central Drakensberg in October. Race director Gary Green said the three-day Descent and Great Trek routes would feature brand-new trails coming down off the escarpment into the Tugela Valley bushveld around Spioenkop. "New farms with great new single-track have been discovered and we're also looking at innovative ways to cross Spioenkop Dam. "Our tunnel of floating JoJo tanks that we used to cross the Tugela River washed away in the recent floods, so we're also investigating new possibilities there." Green said would-be participants could enter either the three-day races or the original two-day event. "A few riders enter all three and stay for 11 days as they think the riding is that good!" He said the field had been marginally increased to allow cyclists on the waiting list a chance to enter. "The event is mainly for two-man teams but we do allow solo entries in the Great Trek." Green said those riders who took part last year would be guaranteed an entry if they entered and paid in full by April 4. "We really do value their support." Once the events were fully subscribed, he said additional entrants would be placed on a waiting list and notified via e-mail should spaces become available due to cancellations. While anyone could enter any of the three events, Green said the Descent would be the official prize money race for the men's and mixed teams. "This year, prize money in the women's racing category will be awarded only in the Great Trek, while only medals will be given to the first five ladies' teams in the Descent. "We believe that this option suits the ladies as the Great Trek field is smaller, you get your own tent, great food and roving mechanics to help with mechanicals along the . . .
After no sailing on the first day of the Boardwalk Hobie 16 Nationals being sailed in Port Elizabeth from 20 to 23 March 2014, day two saw an early start in a East North East which then swung to the South East and stayed steady. Varying wind strengths ranging from 4 to 12 knots saw the fleet challenged for 4 races in a sea state ranging from flat to long chop. Four races were sailed - all on a gated sausage with two rounds to the finish off of Hobie Beach giving good sightings for spectators enjoying the sunshine and Shark Rock viewpoint. Fresh from their Hobie Worlds Masters win in Australia this year, William and Lucinda Edwards dominated the day with two firsts and two thirds for a nett point tally of 8 and seven points in the lead ahead of arch rivals, Blaine and Roxanne Dodds with a smorgasbord of placings - 1st, 2nd, 4th and 8th. The Dodds and Edwards teams are sailing for Knysna Yacht Club. Finishing the day on third are Belinda and Ryan Hayward from Fish Hoek Beach Sailing Club with 17 points and the first local boat is in fourth place with Robert Archibald at the helm and crew, daughter Alexa, on 22 points. Race 2 was sailed under a black flag (under a black flag if any boat crosses the start line within the last minute before the start then it is immediately disqualified and marked OCS) unfortunatey for local sailing team Andrew and Angela Ward they were judged OCS and now carry an additional 31 points which they will be happy to discard as soon as th efirst discard race kicks in. The Top three finishers today: William and Lucinda Edwards - Knysna Yacht Club on 8 points Blaine and Roxanne Dodds - Knysna Yacht Club on 15 points Belinda and Ryan Hayward - Fish Hoek Beach Sailing Club on 17 points Sailing on Saturday 22 March looks as if it will be challenging with a 8 - 16 knot North North West swinging to South West and a high temperature of 32 degrees centigrade and no cloud cover. Author: Alan Straton from ABYC. No of Images . . .
FNB NMMU have named an unchanged squad to take on log leaders FNB NWU-Pukke in their do-or-die FNB Varsity Cup semifinal clash in Potchefstroom on Monday night. Madibaz head coach David Maidza said his players had all been declared fit and were raring to go after a bruising 33-34 loss to FNB Shimlas in Bloemfontein this week. Playing to the final whistle, the Madibaz scored a last-gasp converted try to earn the bonus points that catapulted them into the play-offs. Maidza said his men had shown good character throughout the tournament and were ready to tackle the next challenge. The Port Elizabeth side will face their toughest test yet as they look to remedy their 16-52 fourth-round loss to the team from North-West Province. "We have a huge task ahead, playing an in-form Pukke team at their home ground," said a circumspect Maidza. "We are very aware of the round-robin result, where we were completely outclassed, but this is a whole new game. "Our homework is done and it is now time to go out and execute as perfectly as possible our game plan as one unit." The Madibaz have marched an often rocky road to the elimination rounds, notching up four wins and three losses en route. Maidza said what lay behind them was now less important than what lay before them. "I've told the players to go out and play to the best of their ability and not worry at what stage of the competition we are at. "We are very excited about the challenge and prospects that lie ahead." Captain Roy Godfrey will lead from the front once again as he takes his troops into their second semifinal in as many seasons. Madibaz lost to Maties in the penultimate round last year. The burly prop has had an outstanding tournament thus far and was nominated as part of the Varsity Cup "best 15" team this week. Fellow "dream team" member Daniel Acker will play a key role at scrumhalf, while flyhalf Gavin Hauptfleisch will be looking to put points on the board with his golden . . .
20 MARCH 2014, CAPE TOWN – Johannesburg’s Diepsloot Mountain Biking Academy and Team Absa taking part in the Absa Cape Epic, starting this week, rallied behind Cape Town’s drive to become the world’s most sustainable city, whilst preparing for the epic race yesterday. Voting in the We Love Cities campaign – an initiative by the World Wildlife Fund to create sustainable cities throughout the world ahead of Earth Hour on 29 March – comes to an end today (20 March). Actress, activist, humanitarian and motivational speaker, Hlubi Mboya (pictured), who is originally from the Cape, is a newcomer to the Absa Cape Epic MTB race, which is now in its 11th year, and is riding for Team Absa, partnering with racing driver, Gugu Zulu. The winner of the We Love Cities contest by WWF will be announced on 27 March. Votes are collected by directly voting on the We Love Cape Town Page or by using #WeLoveCapeTown on social media. Author: Megan Hodson from Bronwen Blunden PR. No of Images Uploaded: One More Info link: http://www.cape-epic.com/ Twitter: Facebook: Images: For high res version/s of One image/s please contact: Bronwen Blunden PR. 2014 Absa Cape Epic Team Absa rider and celebrity, Hlubi Mboya, originally from the Cape, votes for #WeLoveCapeTown. Submit your press release to MyPR.co.za. . . .
NMMU student Jonguxolo Mani has his sights set on walking off with the gold medal in the mile event at the Varsity Athletics meeting in Port Elizabeth on Friday night. Mani will be aiming to set his home track on the South Campus alight in the opening item of the two-hour televised track and field programme. The 10 000m walk specialist said he was looking forward to competing in the shorter distance, which is a new addition to the Varsity Athletics line-up this year. "It uses speed, which is what I'm good at, and the pace is a lot quicker than my usual distance." Mani said his objective for the four-meet national series would be the top spot on the overall podium. "I'm aiming high but if I don't get gold, then at least a top-three position." The KwaNobuhle resident is currently ranked fourth in South Africa after clocking a personal best of 54:36 in his specialist distance at the national championships in Cape Town last year. The 20-year-old made a promising start to the new season when he claimed victory in the 5 000m at the opening meet of the EPA Track and Field League in February. Mani achieved a season's best of 27:32:97 but said his goal was still to set a sub-25-minute time and earn a spot in the national team. "I was well prepared as I was opening my season. Competing alone against the electronic timer was very challenging." The Madibaz athlete said he was still recovering from a hip injury, which he sustained during training. "But I'm definitely getting there," he said. Mani said his role model was Wayne Snyman, who is due to represent South Africa at the IAAF Race Walk World Cup in China in May. As for his own ambitions, the first-year inventory and stores management student said he still hoped to compete in the Olympics one day. The made-for-television format of the Varsity Athletics series could provide the national platform Mani needs to achieve his aims. He will compete against athletes from the eight top . . .
The Absa Team riding in the Cape Epic are looking for Captonian’s with big hearts and big legs to challenge them in a celebrity spinathon at Cape Town’s V&A Waterfront Amphitheatre this Saturday to raise funds for the Diepsloot Mountain Bike Academy (DMBA) – their nominated charity for Team Absa 2014. Starting at 11:30 until 13:00 on March 22 at the V&A’s Amphitheatre, Team Absa’s Cape Epic riders, most of which are made up of celebrities and sports personalities, say that they are prepared to put their money with their legs are to raise big bucks for their favourite mountain bike academy – Diepsloot. The Diepsloot Mountain Bike Academy is a non-profit organization based at Northern Farm in Johannesburg that provides a platform to expose the youth of Diepsloot to the sport of mountain biking to enhance their education through Mathematics and English and to impart life skills to the community. In addition to the ‘celebrity spinathon’, for every stage of the Cape Epic that a Team Absa rider completes, Absa will donate funds to the academy. Says Absa Team Captain, Ernst Viljoen, ahead of the eight-day, 718-km MTB challenge that starts on Sunday, March 23, “With only days to go until the world’s biggest mountain bike race, Team Absa is prepared both mentally and physically. The team’s training has focussed on strength training and endurance, allowing each member to handle the daily challenges experienced throughout the eight day Epic. Since the last full team training session on 22 February, we have been following a revised eating plan, which adds more energy to our diets, plus our training has shifted a gear in order to avoid injury before the race. We would like to wish all riders good luck. Be safe, ride with pride and enjoy the epic journey." Follow all the action on @AbsaCapeEpic and @DiepslootMTB and share messages of encouragement by using #Prosper, #ProudlyDMA and #TeamAbsa2014. About Team Absa at the Cape Epic Team Absa is an . . .
FNB NMMU ended their FNB Varsity Cup round-robin campaign in dramatic fashion when their one-point loss to the FNB Shimlas turned into a "win" as they secured a semifinal spot on Monday night. A bonus-point try in the dying moments of the game, plus an additional point for the narrow (33-34) margin of defeat, saw the Madibaz leapfrog the team from Bloemfontein in the overall standings. A single point was ironically the Port Elizabeth-based team's undoing last year, when they were eliminated in the play-offs by FNB Maties. They will now face log leaders FNB NWU-Pukke in Potchefstroom this coming Monday night. Madibaz head coach David Maidza commended his men for their gritty display in "clawing their way back" into the Shimlas match, which he described as a good advert for Varsity Cup rugby. "It was a tight game and in the bigger picture that's how we went through. Having said that, I wasn't pleased that our ill discipline could have cost us our qualification." The Madibaz picked up two yellow cards in a hard-fought, closely contested match that saw them whittled down to 13 men at one stage. "The game is normally lost by the team that makes the most mistakes and we allowed Shimlas to get back into the game and score points from some of our errors." Maidza said they would not get away with a similar performance in the semis. "We need to be better than that." The Madibaz suffered their biggest loss of the tournament (16-52) at the hands of Pukke. "Having lost to them pretty badly in the fourth round, we know exactly where their strength lies. But it's a new game altogether and that's how we're going to treat it." He said any home ground advantage to their opponents would be negligible. "At the knockout stage, it doesn't really count. We've actually been pretty good away from home and we're looking forward to the game." Maidza said his men knew they would have their work cut out for them however. "We've worked hard to get . . .
Two South African sailing teams completed a one-two finish at the recent Hobie 16 World Championships held in Jervis Bay, New South Wales, Australia sailed between 31 January and 10 February 2014. William and Lucinda Edwards finished in first place and 4 points ahead of second placed Blaine and Roxanne Dodds also from Plettenberg Bay. Both teams will be returning to Algoa Bay, Port Elizabeth to sail in the Boardwalk Hobie 16 National Championships from 20 to 23 March 2014. The keen rivalry between these two champion teams is expected to continue as they finished the 2013 Hobie Nationals also in the same one-two placings. Local sailor, Andrew Ward has been puting in time on the water and slimming down as he and his crew, Angela Ward look to improve their 3rd place in last year's event. Racing starts not before 11:00 am on Thursday 20 March and the Hobies will launch from Hobie Beach to sail offshore yet visible from the Shark Rock Pier and beachfront in front of The Boardwalk. Racing will continue each day thereafter - weather dependent - until Sunday when the new champions will be crowned. The Boardwalk Hobie 16 Nationals Regatta is organized by the Hobie 16 Class in conjunction with the Algoa Bay Yacht Club (ABYC) under the auspices of South African Sailing (SAS). Notes: Any media wishing to take advantage of being on the water can confirm daily with Paula Archibald on 0823736901 or report to the regatta office on Hobie Beach and ask for Paula who will organise a trip out for them. Alan Straton will be putting out a daily report with images. 2012 results: http://hobie16nationals.co.za/2012-boardwalk-hobie-16-results/#more-89 2013 results: http://hobie16nationals.co.za/category/2013/results-2013/ The 505 Worlds practise regatta is taking place at the same time - on a different course - and will feature some World Champions ahead of the staging of the 505 World Championships in Algoa Bay in 2015. Author: Alan Straton from MyPE. No . . .
High-jumper Morita Botha will be aiming to raise the bar for the Madibaz team when she competes against the country's best in the first Varsity Athletics meeting at the NMMU Stadium in Port Elizabeth on Friday night. Botha will be one of 27 track and field stars that will represent the university in the prestigious four-part national series, which will be televised live on SuperSport. The 21-year-old, who also took part in the inaugural competition last year, said she had her sights set on medalling in front of her home crowd. "This competition is on my turf so I'll stand to benefit because I'm used to jumping in the windy conditions." Botha said her major goal for the overall competition would be to clear a mark of 1.70m. The first-year arts student appears to be on track after jumping 1.65m at the opening meet of EPA Track and Field League in February. The result was just two centimetres shy of her personal best, which she set in Durban in 2011. "It was the first competition of the year and I worked really hard because I knew I needed to start preparing for Varsity Athletics and SA champs." Botha said the provincial meet had been the perfect opportunity to build on the successes of last season and that she had qualified for the junior national championships in the process. The former KwaZulu-Natal resident said she would use Varsity Athletics to push herself to new heights in a bid to make the senior national champs again. "I like the fast-paced nature of the competition. It forces us to train harder and keep up with the standards." Botha said she was expecting strong opposition from the likes of NWU-Pukke and the University of Johannesburg. Athletes from eight leading universities will compete in the two-hour track and field programme at the South Campus in Summerstrand. The event kicks off with the curtain-raiser relay races at 5.30pm and finishes at 8pm. The series continues at North-West University in Potchefstroom on . . .