Cape Town - Team Cannondale Blend’s Darren Lill and Waylon Woolcock finished sixth in Monday’s 113km stage of the Absa Cape Epic - taking charge of the race for the African jersey.
Crossing the line in 4:44:51.2, they were the only South African team to stay with the top Europeans dominating the general classification this year.
Lill and Woolcock have moved into seventh place overall.
FedGroup Itec’s Max Knox and Kevin Evans were among the scores of teams who had troubled days and, after their excellent showing in the prologue, dropped back to 12th overall, some 10 minutes after Lill and Woolcock.
Philip Buys, racing with cross-country world champion Nino Schurter of Switzerland for Team Scott-Odlo, came home in 11th place - 13 minutes behind the leaders and in ninth place overall.
Best of the local riders in the women’s category were Yolande de Villiers and Ischen Stopforth (Sasol Racing), who finished fifth in 5:57:00.7.
One of the best performances of the day was by South African Andrew McLean, who won the Grand Masters category - for riders of 50 and over - in 5:09:21.1 with Austrian teammate Heinz Zoerweg (SuperSport Toyota).
They came home ahead of the winners of the over-40s Masters category which went to the South African pairing of Shan Wilson and Adrian Enthoven (Definitive Bikes) in 5:25:32.2.
South Africans Cherise Stander and Theo Blignaut (RECM Mixed) are third in the mixed category after finishing in 5:53:48.3 on Monday, and are five minutes behind leaders Yannick Lincoln and Aurelie Halbwachs (Synergy) of Mauritius.