|What||South African Cross Country Moto Final Round Preview|
|Where||Virginia Trails, KZN|
|When||Saturday 16 October 2021|
|Community||South Africa National|
Overall championship and all class titles to be decided this weekend
Nobody yet knows who any of them will be, but the 2021 South African National Cross Country Motorcycle champions will be crowned at Virginia Trails in KwaZulu Natal on Saturday 16 October. Nobody knows, because none of the championships are anywhere near decided. And that in spite of there just being one race left to run this weekend. Yes, that’s how close this year’s championships are.
Local KZN OR2 Brother Leader Tread KTM hero Bradley Cox is however the lad to beat in the overall chase. He leads reigning champion Brett Swanepoel’s OR1 Rockstar Husqvarna by a handy 19 points, with two more OR1 men, Kawasaki riders Mike Pentecost and d’Artagnan Lobjoit in pursuit. Gauteng trio Ian Rall, Davin Cocker and Kerim Fitz-Gerald are in a fight with Lobjoit for fourth. Only Swanepoel and Pentecost however have a mathematical chance of overhauling Cox.
It’s far closer in the classes. It's super tight in open class OR1 where Mike Pentecost’s second CIT Franchise Kawasaki class win on the trot over the similarly mounted D’Artagnan Lobjoit last time out, saw Pentecost draw level with Swanepoel in that title chase. And with Lobjoit is just seven points adrift, OR1 is all to play for. Also keep an eye on Haydem Louw’s Sherco, Jaycee Nienaber’s Husqvarna and Hein van Niekerk and Dakar-bound Charan Moore's KTMs in the top class
Talking Dakar, overall and OR2 championship leader Brad Cox will have a busy week as he races in Morocco to prepare for his Dakar debut, before flying straight home to defend his SA Cross Country advantage. The son of former SA Dakar hero Alfie Cox's class lead, is far tighter over Ian Rall’s OR2 MCA Dragon Husqvarna, with just ten points between them. And former motocrosser Kerim Fitz-Gerald’s Red Bull KTM on a charge, right behind them.
It’s closer than ever in the quarter-litre OR3 class too, where Davin Cocker has fought back on his Rockstar Husqvarna to take a scant 2-point advantage to Virginia Hills over Scott Heygate's Alfie Cox KTM. There’s a huge fight going down for third in OR3 too, between Erik Ernst Merry’s Husqvarna, Pepson Plastics Kawasaki Motul lad Kyle Mckenzie and Matthew Wilson. Which way will that be resolved?
Wade Blaauw has been unbeatable in the over-36 Seniors on his Roost KTM, where CIT Franchise Kawasaki rider Deon du Toit is determined to beat him to crack his bridesmaid streak, with Marco Cocci's Dirk Olivier and Stuart Gregory in close attendance too. But there’s a significant Senior wildcard at play in KZN as multiple SA motocross champion Wyatt Avis makes his Cross Country debut on a Pepson Plastics Motul Kawasaki.
It’s however very close in over-46 Masters, where Greg Nairn’s Husqvarna leads the way with a three-point title advantage over Carel le Roux's Alfie Cox KTM. But the big news there is Wayne Farmer's fight back aboard to title contention on his Biker's Warehouse Husqvarna.
Expect a double four-way fight for 125cc High School honours between championship leader, KTM Durban lad Dylan Jones, Branden Swanepoel’s Trademore Sherco, John Botha's Franchise CIT Husqvarna and Derek Karam's Roost KTM. And for the 85cc Junior title between Cobus Bester's Spherical Holeshot Husqvarna, Thomas Scales’ KTM, Brandon Clarke’s Husqvarna and Johny Luck.
Husqvarna holds a narrow SA Cross Country Manufacturer’s lead over KTM and it's even closer for third between Yamaha and upstart Kawasaki in its rookie season. And there’s another interesting statistic to consider ahead of this weekend's Virginia Hills finale: Brad Cox became the fourth rider and his KTM the fourth different machine make to win a race in the four rounds so far this season. So can anyone do the double, or will there be more fresh winners come Saturday afternoon?
Either way, all the 2021 SA Cross Country Motorcycle title class fights are going right down to the wire in Virginia Trails, this weekend!
Issued on behalf of SA Cross Country Moto
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