Top NMMU cyclist excels at Paarl event

PORT Elizabeth’s cycling prospect Monique Gerber excelled at the Engen Cycle Tour in Paarl at the weekend.

The 17-year-old Gerber, who cycles for NMMU but competed solo in Paarl, not only won the junior women’s category but also finished second in the overall category.

She said the Engen Cycle Tour was her second biggest race this year after she managed a fourth place in the elite women’s section at the OFM Classic in Bloemfontein a fortnight ago.

“I’m very pleased to have finished in the top five in both races because I’m still a junior. But, next year I will be competing solely in the elite category,” Gerber said yesterday.

“Both races proved to me I am ready to compete against senior riders but I still need to work hard on my sprinting.”

She said the Engen Cycle event was very tactical and tough considering the fact that other female riders were competing in teams.

“My teammates did not participate in the race. There were a number of attacks going on but I pushed myself harder and harder to beat them. I’m very proud of my achievement after I didn’t qualify for the national junior team.”

She said her aim was to qualify for the Junior Cycling World Championships in Spain next year.

“I’m very competitive in everything I do and I try to go further and further to be the best rider.

“I train almost every day and I know once I qualify for the world championships, I will do well.”

Gerber started competing when she was eight years old. – Mthetho Ndoni

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