60 Second Update – Roof of Africa, Day 1
With the opening day of the 2013 Roof of Africa now complete it’s Husqvarna’s Altus De Wet that leads Graham Jarvis and Wade Young.
Images: © Nick Muzik
His Royal Highness, the King of Lesotho got things under way in the first ‘Round the Houses’ race of the day, but it was Heat 2 of the Gold Class that was the race to watch as Altus De Wet charged off the front of the field, letting his intentions be known for the rest of the day. While not all the favourites decided to contest the ceremonial start, De Wet was pushed hard by New Zealand’s Chris Birch, who was also keen to stamp his authority on this year’s race.
After “Round the Houses” the riders moved to the top of Bushman’s Pass for the Time Trial and the first real racing stage. Again it was De Wet who set the fastest time. With less than one minute separating the top five riders, this year’s Mother of Hard Enduro is looking set to be an epic battle.
At the end of day one the leader board holds all three names from the 2012 podium. De Wet’s Husqvarna team-mate, Graham Jarvis sits just 13 seconds back, while reigning champion, Wade Young (KTM) is third – 48 seconds off the pace.
Young’s KTM team mate, Chris Birch will start tomorrows stage in fourth position just six seconds behind the young South African. Kenny Gilbert (Yamaha) rounds out the top five and will have a front row seat watching the battle between the KTM duo.
After a sweltering day of temperatures in the mid 30’s, the forecast for Friday and Saturday is predicting rain and in Lesotho that means things are going to get a whole lot tougher.
Racing starts tomorrow morning at 6am with riders leaving in real time after today’s time trial results.
Results – Roof of Africa: Day One
1, Altus De Wet, South Africa Husqvarna 01:28:55
2, Graham Jarvis, UK, Husqvarna 01:29:08
3, Wade Young, South Africa, KTM 01:29:43
4, Chris Birch, New Zealand, KTM 01:29:49
5, Kenny Gilbert Yamaha 01:29:52
6, Travis Teasdale KTM 01:30:27
7, Scott Bouverie KTM 01:30:34
8, Blake Gutzeit, South Africa Sherco 01:33:27
9, Jade Gutzeit South Africa, Sherco 01:34:47
10, James Hodson Yamaha 01:34:50