Saturday, 28 April 2012
Stanley's Quantum Classic All Results
AJ Calitz breaks the record by 4 mins in an insane time of 2hrs 32 mins.
Ugene Nel says the cold front dumped good rain in the mountains, ensuring a technical and tough course.
First lady in was Ilse Esterhuyse and Five Finger 'barefoot' runner - Werner Daniel - placed 6th.
Trail runners are enjoying the country festival, cheese and wine.
Race Photos by Master Blaster Jacques Marais on his Facebook and in Quantum Adventures.
The 3d running of this Mountain lived up to it's reputation as "definitely tough" but runners were rewarded with a real sense of achievement as they traversed the very wet and treacherous boulder field with vistas forever. Just have a look at the "Quantum Adventures Events" FB page to view the mind blowing images from Jacques Marais and Peter Kirk]
As in previous years, rain descended for 2 days prior to the run which made conditions especially challenging. With the route being on the the South face of the Elandsberg, the sun never reaches the highest point near "Stanley's Light". Race Organizer, Ugene Nel carried nearly 200m of rope up the mountain 2 days before the run in pouring rain to provide some secure hand holds at some of the seriously exposed areas - normally not needed with dry conditions. However, the sloping rock slabs became like a soap slide after the torrential rain.
The weather held on Saturday morning as runners set off from the Ladismith School. The weather high in the mountain tends to change within minutes and with some cloud and mist rolling over the top, it was essential for runners to carry their compulsory rain gear.
AJ Calitz made his intentions clear early as he opened a 300m gap by the time they reached the actual trail - 2km from the start. He showed his power as he took on the switchbacks up to the first plateau - running steadily with hardly breaking a sweat. The 2nd, 4km climb to the 2nd ridge seemed not to bother him at all as he increased his lead even further with a 5min gap between him and 2nd place runner, Tiaan Erwee. Dawie Carstens - whose brother, August Carstens is currently riding from Kilimanjaro to link up with the start of the 2300km Freedom Challenge mtb race next month... - was placed 3d at this point. Further back, Keith Moodie, Mark Witzmann and Five Fingers runner - Werner Daniel were chasing each other. In the female race, Ilse Esterhuyse led Caitlin Lewis and Anna Lucia Stevens by a comfortable margin. The front runners crossed the wet rock slab above the waterfall with ease and looked comfortable as they headed to the notoriously difficult boulder field.
With temperatures plummeting as cloud continued rolling over the mountain peak, the safety marshals at high up in the mountain were semi frozen, donning all their wet and cold weather gear! Still the weather held and at 2hr32min16sec after they started, the radio call came through to Ugene, high up in the mountain. AJ Calitz finished 1st in a new record time. He broke Dom Wills' record by over 4 minutes. Simply phenomenal! More than 20 minutes later Tiaan Erwee followed in2nd place and another 10 minutes later, Dawie Carstens in 3d.
Ilse Esterhuyse had a comfortable win in 3hr25min44sec with Caitlin Lewis and Anna Lucia Stevens in 2nd and 3d.
For the first time all the runners managed to finish this tough Mountain Run, which is the 1st of the Quantum Country Classic [QCC] series. The last runner crawled over the finish line in 6hr56min... finished! The 3km fun run attracted around 65 runners, mainly from the town folk whilst others competed in the 13km trail run.
Oorlogskloof next! 26 May
Stanleys 2012 Results download