On the 22nd September, Mikayla arrived in Hilton, just outside Pietermaritzburg, KwaZulu-Natal. Weather conditions were atrocious – rain, hail, thunder and lightning. Cross Country Mountain Biking is not for the faint hearted. The conditions were always going to be extremely tough, following the inclement weather, but after a restless night the nerves were already in overdrive. All Mikayla aimed for was a podium finish…….against the best in the country.
Mikayla takes us through her race.
“We were off at a fast pace and I was feeling strong until we hit the outstretched jeep tracks, and suddenly my legs felt weak. I could tell it was going to be a long race! Then it got tougher……when I took a bad fall. However, as a result of the fall, the adrenalin pumped and my legs woke up. I went hard to eventually attain my goal, coming in 3rd in the Junior Ladies, behind Hayley Smith and Linda Van Zyl, a rider I respect and congratulate on a fantastic season’s results. I was not over-pleased with my result on the day, but see it as an amazing learning experience and can’t wait for the next event.”
I think this is a space to watch very carefully and this young lady, having already been to Monaco for Biathlè for her country, could be repeating this for her country in Cross Country Mountain Biking. Dust off that suitcase, Mikayla, and prepare to take your air-sickness tablets!
Report: Dave Pryke