What Trademore Feeds SA Cross Country Round 1 Preview
Where Legends Motocross Park, Pretoria
When Saturday 26 February 2022
Community South Africa National
Pepson Plastics Battle Commences Trademore War
Battle lines are drawn across all classes as the 2022 Trademore Feeds SA National Cross Country Championship field converges on Legends in Pretoria for Pepson Plastics’ season-opener Saturday 26 February. Several riders have changed classes, while others will ride new machinery. And Honda now joins the fray to add a little red to the sea of orange, white and blue, with an increasing proportion of green.
Open class 450cc OR1 is bound to be explosive. Overall 2021 and OR2 champion Bradley Cox steps straight from Dakar up to the top class Brother Leader Tread KTM to take on ’21 OR1 champion Mike Pentecost’s Franchise Co.Tork Craft Kawasaki. Don’t ignore ever-improving Pepson Plastics Kawasaki Motul riders D’Artagnan Lobjoit and Craig Alcock, or Tyron Beverly’s Franchise Co.Tork Craft Kawasaki, Brendan Kotze who shifts up from OR2 on a Kawasaki Jaycee Nienaber’ Spherical Husqvarna and Michael Roodt’s Honda.
Multiple champion Brett Swanepoel shifts down from the open class OR1 to his preferred 350cc OR2 for Husqvarna Racing. There he will find both former motocross champion Kerim Fitz-Gerald moving into his second season on a Red Bull KTM and Scott Heygate, who moves up from ending second OR2 last year, on a Brother Leader Tread KTM. Add the likes of Juan Niebuhr’s Rhubein KTM, Dylan Cox, who moves up from OR3 on a RBS Powasol Yamaha and Dijan van der Merwe’s experimental Franchise Co.Tork Craft Kawasaki.
War is also imminent in 250cc OR3, where Husqvarna Racing champion Davin Cocker is out to do the double. He will have old rivals Matthew Wilson’s Brother Leader Tread KTM, and Pepson Plastics Kawasaki Motul men Kyle McKenzie and Taki Bogiages on his case, if Taki is fit to ride. Add rapid High School graduates John Botha’s Franchise Co.Tork Craft Kawasaki, Branden Swanepoel on a Trademore Feeds Bike Shack Sherco, and Cape lad Charles-Reinhardt Kersop’s Eddy2race Husqvarna.
There’s a change of colour at the head of the Seniors race, where it seems red and green will now be flavour of the month. Champion Wade Blaauw has moved onto a Sleepover CIT Torkcraft Honda, but he won’t have it all his own way this year. That’s if Pepson Plastics Motul Kawasaki duo, former multiple SA Cross Country champion Kenny Gilbert on a 450, and many time motocross champion Wyatt Avis on a 250, have anything to say about it. Add Jayden Boyce’s Kawasaki and Ockert Swart’s Cow Welfare Husqvarna.
Mielies le Roux riding a Franchise Co. Tork Craft Kawasaki and Francois Swanepoel Spherical Holeshot Husqvarna will fight it out in Masters, with regular Wayne Farmer’s Husqvarna, Yamaha men Martin Poole and Marius de Kerk, and KTM riders Ernst Slabbert and Warrick van Schalkwyk likely back for more.
Wian Wentzel must start as a High School favourite if his recent regional pace was anything to go by on his Franchise Co. Tork Craft Husqvarna. But he has Junior champion Cobus Bester on a Spherical Holeshot Husqvarna KTM, Durban lads Ross Ramseyer and Nathan Westerdale, as well as Rory Donaldson’s KTM, Aidan George on a Husqvarna and Blu Cru Yamaha lad Riley Bac to deal with too.
An encouraging grassroots entry will see 85cc kids, Brandon Clarke Spherical Holeshot Husqvarna and Joss Alexander Biker’s Warehouse Husqvarna fighting it out with Franchise Co.Tork Craft Kawasaki pair Jaden Els and Johandre Vermaak. Add two more Kawasakis for Pepson Plastics Motul lad Clayton Human and Jayden Boyce, Bruno Niebuhr’s Rhubein KTM and Husqvarna duo AJ Louw and Willem van Wyk.
Last but not least, the Junior class will see Mackenzie Bam’s Motul Fox Raceworx KTM taking on Pepson Plastics Motul Kawasaki pair Jake Pretorius and Dylan Human, Husqvarna duo, Sleepover CIT Torkcraft kid Liam Scheepers Rhubein rider Werner Kleinhans, Wilco du Plooy’s Rhubein Yamaha and Matthew Meyer’s Gas Gas.
Some things are for sure. New battles will be joined at the Pepson Plastics season opener. Fresh Trademore Feeds SA National Cross Country Championship rivalries shall commence. And it all comes to a head at Legends on Saturday. It is time to race!
Issued on behalf of Trademore SA Cross Country