Cape Town - Only
five seconds separated Spur-Specialized and Sport for Good at the finish of
Stage 4 of Absa Cape Epic, with the race leaders being on the right side of
that difference - thanks to a superior finish.
was slightly less painful,” exclaimed Kleinhans before revealing that Langvad
was the main protagonist in the day’s final act.
is such a great partner. Today’s stage was really about teamwork and she was
really awesome and made the difference when we dropped Topeak Ergon. Then, it
was really great racing with Sport for Good. Coming into the finish, which was
a little bit different to yesterday, she was motor-pacing me.”
for her part, wasn’t going to let the Sport for Good pair of Sabine Spitz and
Yana Belomoina take the stage win without a fight.
knew they wanted to go for the stage win but it was in our interests too, so I
asked Ariane that if she’s up for a sprint finish then I am too.”
two teams rode within touching distance of each other for the majority of the
75km stage out and back from CPUT Wellington, during which positioning was
important in and out of the famous Welvanpas trails.
after Water Point 2 they got away from us,” said Kleinhans. “We weren’t
worried, but we didn’t know whether we would be able to close the gap…”
Olympic gold medallist Spitz said she had enjoyed today’s stage: “It was cross-country style so it was a
nice fast one. We tried to make some nice moves, especially when we left the
water point before Ariane and Annika. There was a flat section after that and
they closed the gap and caught us.”
and Belomoina continued racing close to Kleinhans and Langvad thereafter, but
the Swiss-Danish pair proved unbeatable.
are both strong, so we are very satisfied with second place today. In the
closing stages I said to Yana that it’s better to stay behind them because they
know the route. It was going to be easier to follow their path through the
corners and save energy by not having to concentrate as hard,” said Spitz.
about her first experience of the Absa Cape Epic, Spitz said there had been
moments on the first stage when she couldn’t
see too well because of all the dust, “but I’ve
loved the last three stages”.
if she would like to come back and win the race, Spitz laughed: “Maybe … why
after two days of suffering in the searing heat, Spitz’s Ukrainian partner felt
much more in her comfort zone in the mild conditions riders were greeted with
was a very good day for me – all stage I still had energy and my legs felt good
so it was fun racing with everybody. It was good weather for me, not so hot, so
it was much better.”
matching Spur-Specialized blow-for-blow, Spitz and Belomoina remain in third
place overall, behind Topeak Ergon’s Sally Bigham and Adel Morath. The
English-German pair came home third on the day, but over five minutes behind
the leading pair and are now 12.49 behind Kleinhans and Langvad overall.
were some nice trails out there but we were pretty much on our own the whole
day after losing contact with the first two teams on the first climb. At times
we closed the gap, but not enough to be in contention so we saved ourselves a
little bit,” said Bigham.
was nice to have a shorter stage today as it gave us a bit more time to eat,
stretch and look after ourselves; especially because tomorrow is a long stage.”
for her part, arrived back at CPUT Wellington in far better spirits than she
had the previous day.
knee was sore again today but I enjoyed my time on the bike, it was a very nice
stage but it’s frustrating losing time to the other teams.”
is a transition stage that will see the riders cover 93km from Wellington to
Boschendal Wine Estate in Stellenbosch but with 2 500m of climbing, it is
billed as the toughest stage of this year’s Absa Cape Epic – the Queen stage.
main focus is the orange jersey, not stage wins, so we might take it safe
tomorrow,” concluded Kleinhans.
Stage 4 results
1. Spur-Specialized 50-1 Annika Langvad (Denmark)
50-2 Ariane Kleinhans (Switzerland) 3:41.16,8
2. Sport for Good 54-2 Yana Belomoina (Ukraine)
54-1 Sabine Spitz (Germany) 3:41.22,3 +5,5
3. Topeak Ergon 53-1 Sally Bigham (England) 53-2 Adel Morath (Germany)
1. Spur-Specialized 50-1 Annika Langvad (Denmark)
50-2 Ariane Kleinhans (Switzerland) 20:46.56,2
2. Topeak Ergon 53-1 Sally Bigham (England) 53-2
Adel Morath (Germany) 20:59.45,7 +12.49,5
3. Sport for Good 54-2 Yana Belomoina (Ukraine) 54-1 Sabine Spitz (Germany)
4. Meerendal Wheeler 52-1 Esther Suss (Switzerland) 52-2 Catherine Williamson
(England) 21:48.48,8 +1:01.52,6
5. Galileo Risk 55-1 Theresa Ralph (South Africa) 55-2 Yolandi du Toit (South
Africa) 22:54.55,3 +2:07.59,1
6. Meerendal Rocky EBE 56-1 Hielke Elferink (Netherlands) 56-2 Elisabeth
Brandau (Germany) 23:00.35,8 +2:13.39,6
7. Energade Racing 202-1 Dalene van der Leek (South Africa) 202-2 Sharon Laws
(England) 23:09.34,6 +2:22.38,4
8. Asrin Cycling 71-1 Janka Keseg Stevkova (Slovakia) 71-2 Sandra Santanyes
Murillo (Spain) 23:16.58,6 +2:30.02,4
9. Liv - MTB Pro 59-1 Muriel Bouhet (France) 59-2 Merce Pacios Pujado (Spain)
10. Speed Structures 68-1 Marleen Lourens (South Africa) 68-2 Nicky Giliomee
(South Africa) 27:16.14,3 +6:29.18,1