Hendricks eager for Tour Durban showdown05/09/2022
aQuellé Tour Durban road closures08/09/2022
One of Durban’s premier women’s MTB stars Hayley Smith is set for an exciting two days of racing at the aQuellé Tour Durban as she takes on both the 35km MTB race and the full 106km road race this weekend.
Smith has been a top performer on the various trails around KwaZulu-Natal and will once again swap the MTB for the road bike on Sunday when she tackles the elite ladies for a spot on the podium in what should be a competitive showdown.
Born and raised on the South Coast of KZN, Smith now calls Durban North home and has been able to use her proximity to the EMBA trails behind Cornubia Mall as an advantage going into Saturday’s MTB race.
“I have ridden the route in the past few weeks and it is looking good especially after the floods earlier in the year,” Smith said. “I think that the trails play into my hands with a climb right towards the end of the race.
“I am really looking forward to it because I have an idea of what to expect from the route and it’s going to be an exciting Saturday of racing.”
Smith’s focus will be on winning the MTB race before she shifts that effort into the road race on Sunday. Having a number of teams to compete with over the 106km her expectations are more subdued for Sunday.
“It’s going to be great to see how the route plays out because there are going to be some tough hills towards the end of the race that could be the difference.
“With the competition and the teams that I will be up against I want to just make sure that I am in the hunt and cover any breaks that will definitely come.
“It’s going to be an awesome challenge that I am looking forward to and if I could finish in the top five that would be a great day out for me,” Smith added.
Taking on two tough events back-to-back will be a challenge in itself but Smith isn’t took worried about the demands that the two events will put on her.
“I always planned on riding in both races and it’s an easy decision for me because I really enjoy the routes and the road closures are great.
“The challenge of competing in both the MTB and the road race is a big draw for me and I look forward to taking it on this weekend.
“It’s going to be important that I recover as well as I can after Saturday so I’ll have to make sure I eat correctly and put my feet up to get ready for the Sunday’s action.”