Friday, 21 December 2012

McGregor, Nikki Mocke, the Mocke brothers and Eray/Mocke, RSA champions of surfski

Photo: Owen Middleton
Last weekend was held at Fish Hoek (RSA), the last race of the Surfski World Series, the Cape Town Downwind, which was also the Sout African National Championships. With no Australian in the field, other competitors arrived from Portugal, Great Britain, Germany or Belgium were not going to dispute the clear favoritism of the locals, mainly the Jasper and Dawid Mocke, who were playing at home. And they got victory in the doubles race of Monday 17th, but were dissapointed in the singles with a 5th and 6th place far away from their aim. Hank McGregor and Matt Bouman showed the Durban way of surfskiing by leading last half of the race, with McGregor retaining the SA title got already in 2011 and Bouman in silver. Bronze was for an impressive Simon van Gysen, who made a terrific final kilometres.

Friday, 7 December 2012

McGregor sets an appointment with Dusi after a great victory at the 50 Miler

Water level was perfect this year. Photo Darren Goddard (Cycho Media)
After seven years Hank McGregor was coming back to race the 50 Miler, which takes place over stages 2 and 3 of the Dusi Unlimited, the big race of the South African summer. McGregor, who lives and trains in Durban, place of arrival of both races, has always found more difficult to win at home than anywhere else in the world. The long portages are often a handicap difficult to compensate in the river. But maybe the fact that the water level was perfect this last weekend and that the organizers decided to open for paddling some sections that are of compulsory portage in the Dusi, have been factors that have played a chance for McGregor this time.

On Saturday, McGregor wanted from the very start to make clear that he was going for victory, setting a very strong pace that only could be followed by Len Jenkins, Andrew Birkett and the young Don Wewege, but it didn't take very long before Jenkins and McGregor, that in absence of Grant van der Walt were then the clear favorites, decided it was time to push a little more to let Wewege and Birkett fall back.