Capitalising on his early season form and strong team support, Reynard Butler snatched the Bestmed Berge en Dale road title in a tight finish near Krugersdorp in Gauteng today.
After winning the Ride for Sight title last weekend, the 29-year-old ProTouch rider was again to the fore in the 107km feature race, edging Calvin Beneke (Luso AC/DC Dynamics) in a sprint finish.
Butler crossed the line at Cradlestone Mall in Muldersdrift in 2:30:37, a second ahead of Beneke, with Flavio Venceslau (Gauteng Track Academy) third.
He praised his team for their role in his success, being set up for the final sprint by Myles van Musschenbroek and Gustav Basson.
After last week’s win, Butler said he felt confident of his form in the dash to the line.
“I knew my sprint legs were there and I felt good during the course of the race.
“It was an aggressive and hard race; I knew the other guys would be tired and I was able to finish it off.”
Although the ProTouch riders put in several attacks during the race, he said everything stayed together until the grand finale.
“We couldn’t ask for much more at the beginning of the year,” he said.
“The guys have really picked up their game from the beginning of the year and our confidence is high at this stage.”
The Demacon women’s team continued to dominate local racing, with newly crowned national road champion Carla Oberholzer picking up her third title of the year.
In another tight finish, she went ahead of Yzette Oelofse (Bestmed) in the closing stages to cross the line 3:10:39. Third went to former Olympian Joanna van de Winkel (Cycle Nation-Sandton City).
After a breakaway by a group of 12 shortly after the first climb, Oberholzer said they rolled through the race until the final sprint.
“My teammate Kim le Court then opened up with about 400m to go and Yzette got onto her wheel.
“I managed to get onto Yzette’s wheel and when I saw her go past Kim I knew I had to put in one last effort to get past her.”
Oberholzer, who, like Butler, triumphed at Ride for Sight, said it was another great outcome for the team.
Demacon also won the Fast One in January through former national champion Lynette Burger.