The build up to Spur Tour de Vaal presented by Anatomic was big among all the schools and riders were eager to race against their fellow learners and friends from other schools. Organizers panned an event that had everything in place, a perfect route for first time Spur MTB series riders, sponsors and partners were set up ready to serve and assist riders. But one element had other plans for the days racing…..the weather. Wet and freezing weather combined with lightning caused a delayed start. The Sub Junior boys set off at 10:00, halfway through their race the event got cancelled for the day. The conditions weren’t in the favor of the riders nor the supporters.
A record 850+ riders braved the cold with their parents / schools / managers. A race village of note was set up and gave one goosebumps as you walked through the gazebos. Riders were huddled up in blankets while dads made a fire for warmth…..and an early morning braai. Mom had the coffee and rusks ready. The commitment of the sponsors and partners was great to see – from 32Gi ready with their nutrition table, Cycle Lab with a tech station and warm-up zone powered by Tacx to MudBuster having a busy day by offering a self service bike wash as there was no lack of dirty bikes with all that mud!
“We want to congratulate all the parents / teachers and team managers who offload their gazebos’, bikes and other equipment on Saturday morning at Tour de Vaal. The weather did not make things easy but it was wonderful to experience the co-operation from the parents, etc. Not a single person became angry when I initially stopped them at the gate and informed them that the organizer requested that they must not drive on the sport field. When after a while I realized that the offloading area is too small and I then allowed them to drive on the field but offload as quickly as possible, they all adhered to the request. There was no problems (well to be honest only one at first refused to move his van) to get all the vehicles from the sport field.
This positive attitude made my job as a volunteer so easy and despite the weather enjoyable. I hope this will also be the situation at the remaining three events.
Lastly we want to thank all the parents, teachers and team managers for the huge effort they put in such an event regarding the gazebos’, snacks, coffee, cool drinks, fruit, breakfasts, etc. for the learners. I don’t think there is another sport where parents, teachers and team managers are so involved and do so much to make the day enjoyable for the learners.
See you at the next event.”