“It is the one race that I would really like to win before I retire as a serious cyclist. Ever since I took up cycling, the first thing that everybody always asked the moment they heard that I was a cyclist, was whether I have competed in the 94.7 Cycle Challenge.
“This race has become one of the cornerstones of South African cycling and a must-do for every cyclist who is serious about the sport. For me the Momentum 94.7 Cycle Challenge is the most special race on the local calendar. It is a celebration of cycling and the only time that Johannesburg’s roads belong solely to the cyclists.”
Burger is overly modest when she refers to herself as the “Silver Maiden” of South African cycling. A study of this season’s racing results reveals that she is currently one of the in-form riders.
So far this season not a weekend has gone by without Burger standing somewhere on the winners’ podium. A definite highlight for her was when she won two gold medals (road as well as time-trial) at the UCI Age Group World Championship in Pietermaritzburg.
Her status as perpetual bridesmaid will change irrevocably in real life this weekend when she is getting married to Dave Pieterse.
Who knows. Perhaps Lynette Pieterse, the new bride, will be able to utilise this opportunity to change her cycling status from that of bridesmaid to bride as well, when she competes in the Momentum 94.7 Cycle Challenge on 18 November.
According to her the Cycle Challenge is one of the most difficult races to win. “The standard of local women’s cycling is improving year after year, especially now that many of the riders are based in Europe for a few months every year. It is also a fact that this is the one race that everybody wants to win."
“By November the season has been very long and we as cyclists just want to get the race done and dusted so that we can all take a well-deserved break. This is another reason why the racing tends to become more aggressive.” When asked what the secret is for a good Cycle Challenge, Burger’s answer was short and sweet: “Stay alert all the time, because you never know when the deciding break will take place.
“In the past few years the race was won by a rider who managed to get away in a small group.”
For more information on the race visit www.cyclechallenge.co.za