He completed the 95km race in a time of 02:08:43. David Maree and Tyler Day were the other cyclist on the podium in second and third place respectively – finishing within a tight bunch sprint, several metres behind the champ.
Girdlestone, who narrowly missed the top spot in the 2018 trapNET, attributed his win to a combination of local route knowledge and teamwork under challenging circumstances.
“Our team was low on riders today, with two being away and one feeling ill, so we basically had three riders doing the work of six. Team DNS ENZA Construction animated a lot of the racing, but having grown up in the area with this route as my training ground in my younger years, I knew exactly where to hit the guys hard and where the stress points were on the course,” Girdlestone explained after the race.
In the women’s race, Kimberley Le Court clinched the top spot in a time of 02:38:13.8, narrowly beating Desray Neale Sebregts, who came second in a photo finish. Parys Edwards finished in third place, crossing the finish line in 02:38:16.
The category winners – including select age group categories – shared an overall prize purse of R65,000, with Girdlestone and Le Court each receiving R10,000.
Medihelp’s Principal Officer, Heyn van Rooyen, also participated in the race and hailed the organisers for delivering another successful event.
“The overwhelming feedback we’ve received today was that participants had a great time on the course. My team and I are proud to have brought another great race to the City of Tshwane, and I am grateful for the generous support we have received from all our sponsors,” said race director Renee Jordaan afterwards.
According to Jordaan this year their close collaboration with the City and traffic authorities resulted in full road and lane closures, and this added safety measure was noted by many cyclists who crossed the finish line.
“I look forward to bringing a bigger and even better Medihelp trapNET to the Pretoria and Centurion regions in 2020, and further establish the Medihelp trapNET as a firm favourite on the City of Tshwane’s race calendar,” Jordaan concluded.
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