Robisch and Looser make Dash history

Usual suspects dominate solo categories.

10 December 2018 | Sports

Rebecca Robisch; cyclist; “This was the hardest race ever for me due to the strong headwinds that prevailed in the beginning.”

Leandrea Louw - For the fourth consecutive year, Swiss cyclist Konny Looser (29) crossed the finish line first in the 14th edition of the Nedbank Desert Dash, while Germany’s Rebecca Robisch (30) clinched the women’s solo title in the gruelling 373km mountain bike race from Windhoek to Swakopmund for a third time.

Looser, who finished in a time of 14 hours and 22 minutes, said that the third stage of the race was the toughest for him. “Winning is nice, but being on the bike was no fun at all. During the first half we raced against a strong wind and I suffered from stomach cramps. I had to fight. A win is a win and I am happy that I could achieve my goal. I had to be very careful not to over pace and stayed with the Gondwana team to save energy. I am lucky that it worked for me in the end.”

He said that the mood and vibe of the race serves as motivation for him. “Riding past Kupferberg is quite spectacular with all the fans watching and cheering the riders on. The whole race is simply great.”

Responding to a question if he would do the Desert Dash again, Looser said he was not sure if he would return for another Dash next year.

Robisch, who finished the race within 17 hours and 17 minutes, said she wanted to give up at one stage but that her mother insisted that she continue. A turning point for her was the fact that she caught up with Irene Steyn, who was leading the race in the first half.

“This was the hardest race ever for me due to the strong headwinds that prevailed in the beginning. I struggled a lot during the first half of the race and thought of giving up. My mom told me to keep going to the next stage. I started feeling better and drafted with the men to preserve some energy for the end.”

Robisch complimented the organisers for hosting a spectacular event and a race with a familiar feel.

“I enjoy returning to Namibia and this particular Desert Dash taught me not to give up. I don’t think I’ll do another Dash though.”

Hot on their heals

Drikus Coetzee who set the pace from the start and was caught by Looser during the second stage, finished as runner up in the men’s solo category in a time of 14:56. Jacques Tattersall was third in 16:15.

In the ladies’ solo event, Irene Steyn took second in a time of 18 hours and 19 minutes, followed by Ciska van der Byl in third spot in 19 hours.

The first 4-persons’ men team to cross the finish line, was Gondwana Masters in 14:22. Team Hollard finished in second position (14:34) while Megatech Mannies Bike Mecca took third spot in 14:37.

R&R Importers won the 4-person mixed team category (16:04) followed by Indongo Toyota in second (16:22) and team Hollard in third position (16:24).

The 2-man team event was won by Team Hollard (14:59 minutes) followed by NCCS (15:28), ahead of team Cycles4U Elite (16:10).

The winning 2-person ladies’ team was Swakopmund Guesthouse (19:02), followed by Uber Girls (19:7) and Delush (21:59) in third.

Husband and wife team Christiaan and Silke Bean of team Beauty and the Bean, won the 2-person mixed team event (18:13), while Team FNB (Marion Schonecke and Ananias Tamati) finished second in 18:39. Dalie Maritz and Willie Junius of team Pari Passu took third in 19:33.

In the 4-person ladies’ event, team Speedy Sloths took gold in 20:20, followed by EpieQ, whose team member Mayvonne Swart (16) – a learner at Pro Ed Academy - was the youngest rider to complete this year’s Dash. Third place went to Ladies in Red, who finished in 22:58.

Illustrious achievement

This year’s event saw more than 1 000 riders from 14 countries cycling in solo, 2-person and 4-person slots participating in the world’s longest single-stage mountain bike race.

Completing the Dash is an illustrious achievement all cyclists want to add behind their names or tick off from their bucket list, said Nedbank’s head of marketing and communications Gernot de Klerk.

“The Desert Dash is not only a physical challenge but also a mental endurance challenge. There is no easy or quick way to conquer the Dash, and the time in the saddle before the race, as cyclists say, is what makes all the difference. After all the hard work, the rush of tackling the treacherous route is an experience that stays with you forever.”

As is the norm, an electrifying atmosphere prevailed at the starting line on Friday at the Grove Mall in Windhoek at 15:00, while family, friends and cycling enthusiasts welcomed the weary, but supremely satisfied and proud cyclists at the finish line at the Platz am Meer Shopping Mall on Saturday in Swakopmund.

Organiser Mannie Heymans expressed his satisfaction with the event, saying that the new finishing point was warranted due to space constraints at Tiger Reef.

Fund raising

Four solo riders – Uwe Diekmann, Gerhard Gulewitz, Patrick Muppertz and Christoph Meier – participated in the Desert Dash to raise funds for the Pro Namibian Children’sHhome. The home caters for 120 orphans and vulnerable children, and is based near the Omomas Farm. The riders managed to raise N$750 000 for the home.

Solo cyclist Ettienne Soekoe pedalled for the Insimbi Legacy Projects, a non-profit organisation raising funds to protect the White Rhino. The funds raised are to assist the anti-poaching team in the Bosveld, Speranza and Messina areas in South Africa.

The Old Dogs for Wild Dogs, a 4-person grandmaster cycling team, took on the challenge to raise funds for the Cheetah Conservation Fund. The team includes Len le Roux, one of the founders of the Desert Dash in 2005, Dr Vincent Shaw, Andreas Brückner and Ecki Fyer.

Similar News

 

Bonnet's up!

13 hours ago | Sports

The Old Wheelers Club hosted their first Bonnet's Up event for the new year at their clubhouse in Olympia on Saturday. With supporters from all...

Let Chalk do the talking here

13 hours ago | Sports

Yolanda Nel - All the way from Finland, this professional gymnast opened a club in Windhoek that focuses on the sport and performance training.Fanni Duncan,...

Hengelkampioene deel hul kennis

13 hours ago | Sports

Gerine Hoff - Saterdagoggend het lede van die Benguella-hengelklub en lede van die publiek aangesluit vir 'n aasaanbiedingskliniek wat deur pa-en-seun Etienne en André-Louis Stipp...

Freddy brings home gold

1 month - 17 December 2018 | Sports

Namibian karateka Freddy Mwiya brought home a gold medal in Kumite from the 9th Commonwealth Karate Championships that took place in Durban, South Africa, recently.He...

Namibia makes a clean sweep

1 month - 17 December 2018 | Sports

Hosts Namibia showed what local anglers are made of, making a clean sweep at the recently hosted Region V Light Tackle Boat Freshwater Angling competition...

Weighty end to bass angling season

1 month - 17 December 2018 | Sports

With five fish weighing in at just over 5.2kg, CP Bothma was the winner of the fourth and final National Bass Angling Competition at the...

Training camp in January

1 month - 17 December 2018 | Sports

Yolanda Nel - Entries for the 26th annual Quinton-Steele Botes athletics coaching and training camp are now open for the January 2019 eventThe camp takes...

Sindhou hopes for gold

1 month - 17 December 2018 | Sports

Olympic silver medallist P.V. Sindhu hopes to finally get her hands on gold when the nearly woman of badminton faces Japan's Nozomi Okuhara in today’s...

Gravel & Dirt series, done and dusted

1 month - 17 December 2018 | Sports

The 2018 Hollard Gravel & Dirt MTB Marathon Series finished in style this year with a Havana/Cuban theme at the Windhoek hot spot, Nyama, where...

Dressage and Show jumping competition underway

1 month - 17 December 2018 | Sports

Adolf KaureAbout 100 riders are taking part in the four day Reiterverein Swakopmund dressage and show jumping national championships which is currently underway in Swakopmund.In...

Latest News

Let Chalk do the talking...

13 hours ago | Sports

Yolanda Nel - All the way from Finland, this professional gymnast opened a club in Windhoek that focuses on the sport and performance training.Fanni Duncan,...

Hengelkampioene deel hul kennis

13 hours ago | Sports

Gerine Hoff - Saterdagoggend het lede van die Benguella-hengelklub en lede van die publiek aangesluit vir 'n aasaanbiedingskliniek wat deur pa-en-seun Etienne en André-Louis Stipp...

Mammadu celebrates successes

1 month - 17 December 2018 | Society

After two months and three weeks of noise and dust, a new eating area, activity room, classroom and shaded parking is complete at the Mammadu...

Christmas lunch for Windhoek’s elderly

1 month - 17 December 2018 | Government

Windhoek’s mayor last week hosted a Christmas lunch for the city’s elderly residents at the Katutura multipurpose centre field.Speaking at the event, mayor Muesee Kazapua...

Be safer this festive season...

1 month - 17 December 2018 | Crime

Just in time for the festive season, the MakeANoise initiative launched a personal safety alarm in Windhoek on Friday.MakeANoise is a community safety and crime...

Reho bejaardes met Kersete bederf

1 month - 17 December 2018 | Society

Boet MatthewsDit was Woensdag ’n miernes van mense toe die Heilige Hart van Jesus-kerk sy jaarlikse Kersete by die St. Joseph-skoolsaal op Rehoboth gehou het,...

Mile 8 comes alive

1 month - 17 December 2018 | Art and Entertainment

Yolanda Nel - With 30 years’ experience in the kitchen, this well-known MasterChef judge and chef in own right, decided to pen a cookbook in...

’n Slang in die...

1 month - 17 December 2018 | Local News

Yolanda Nel - Ná ’n hondjie sy mense-familie van ’n moontlike sebraslang-aanval gered het, het die buurtwag vir hom ’n baie spesiale toekenning gegee.Simba, die...

Road accidents on slow decline

1 month - 17 December 2018 | Accidents

Yolanda Nel - Safety, security and law enforcement remain important, especially in this time of the year.Inspector-general of the Namibian police force, Sebastian Ndeitunga, said...

Load More