After an exciting turn of events in the women’s field, local fans were elated to see a set of South African hands on the Tankwa Trek trophy.
Sweden’s Jennie Stenerhag and South Africa’s own Mariske Strauss stormed to their second consecutive stage victory and the overall title. It was a slow start to the event for the Silverback Fairtree pair, who had to play catch up after a testing first half of the event. “If there was a section of the race that we knew we were going to shine, it was on the Merino Monster. We narrowed the gap on the rest of the field on that climb, and then just kept it together to hold onto that lead on today’s stage,” explained Stenerhag.
A clearly ecstatic Strauss added, “This was the perfect way to lay down a marker for the rest of the season. It’s so good for me individually, and for women’s cycling in general, to have the opportunity to compete against such an elite field.”
Team Silverback Fairtree win the 2019 Momentum Health Tankwa Trek presented by Biogen. Photo: www.zcmc.co.za
The cycling god’s were cruel to Team Summit’s Annie Last and Candice Lill, who were plagued by mechanical issues in the opening stages of the race. The pair fought hard for their second spot overall, however, and their form bodes well for the remainder of the season. Ghost Factory Racing’s Barbara Benko and Anne Terpstra finished in third. Tankwa Trek victory initially looked promising for the pair of National Champions who raced the first two stages donning the pink jerseys.
Scenes from the final stage of the 2019 Momentum Health Tankwa Trek presented by Biogen. Photo: www.zcmc.co.za
Adding a cherry to the top of an already highly successful event, Momentum and Biogen announced the extension of their contract for another three years. Tankwa Trek riders will head home with elation as they look forward to the 2020 installment.