Grey College has once again shown their supremacy in the Spur Schools MTB League by staying undefeated at the top of the Free State log since the inception of the league in 2009.
The team from Grey College that scored an impressive 1649 points will be joined by two Bethlehem based schools – runner up, Voortrekker High School with 497 points and Witteberg High who finished third overall with 410 points.
These three teams as well as the individual category winners will join top riders from across South Africa, Namibia and Zimbabwe at Bekker School in Magaliesberg this weekend to compete for podium positions and ultimately the coveted title of National Spur School MTB League champions this weekend.
On Saturday, 3 October teams will don their school colours and compete for a top spot on the national schools log and on Sunday, 4 October the respective riders selected for the provincial teams, will combine their efforts in an attempt to be the top province in the country.
The Free State team includes the following riders: Camelius van der Riet, Ficksburg (Sub Junior), Rinus Maarsingh, Grey (Junior), Wynand Brits, Grey (Youth 15 years), De Klerk Jacobs, Grey (Sub Junior), Carlo Erasmus, Grey (Junior), Dawie Grobbelaar. Grey (Youth 15 years), Sean van Pletzen, Parys (Sub Junior), Ruben Steyn, Sasolburg High (Youth 16 Years), Dawid Jordaan, Witteberg (Youth 16 Years), Kadwa Muhammed, Voortrekker (Youth 16 Years) – Absent Stephan Burger, Grey (Junior) and Lourens Wiid, Grey (Youth 15 Years).
The Spur Schools Mountain Bike League was launched in 2009 as a joint initiative between Amarider and Spur Steak Ranches and its humble beginnings saw 900 riders participating in only 20 events. This year more than 8000 riders competed in the regionals events. Founded by Meurant Botha, Amarider is a national trails advocacy organisation aimed at improving and promoting trail opportunities around Southern Africa.
Various rider development programmes have been implemented successfully and numerous mountain bike tracks are being built in association with regional municipalities, schools and land owners. In addition, there has been a definite increase in the number of female riders at league events, which is encouraging for the continued growth of the sport. While only high school learners qualify for the national finals, organisers have also noticed a national surge in primary school participation, which augers well for the future of the sport.
A natural progression of the development of the league has been the establishment of South African Schools Cycling (SASC) headed up by Deon Steyn, as national governing body of the sport. Apart from the further development of regional structures, the major drive for SASC is to lobby with the Department of Education to accredit mountain biking as an official schools sport.