SA Women’s Track Cycling Enters Exciting New Era

Two South African women track cyclists have been invited by the UCI (International Cycling Union) to participate in a three-month track cycling training camp at the UCI World Cycling Centre in Aigle, Switzerland, from September to December 2015.  Having been identified as future stars, these young women will be afforded the opportunity to hone their skills and further develop their training under the guidance of expert coaches, receiving advice that will help them rise to the highest possible level.  The selected riders are Odette Van Deventer and Bernette Beyers (pictured).

In Van Deventer’s (19) first year as an Elite rider she earned the title of African Continental Champion in the Team Sprint, and also secured the National titles in the 500m TT and Team Sprint events at this year’s National Championships.  Beyers (23), a relative newcomer to the sport of track cycling, has shown great potential through her performances during the 2015 national season.  Beyers’ cycling background before track cycling was largely focused on road and mountain biking.

Cycling South Africa’s Women’s Track Cycling Programme Coordinator, Annerine Wenhold, is particularly excited about the prospect of bringing the two riders together and building a strong national Team Sprint team.  Wenhold says:  ‘With the correct guidance and training, Odette and Bernette can become a force to be reckoned with on the international circuit.  By spending three months training together in an ideal training environment, they will make the leap required towards increased performance.  We’ve seen a growth in the interest displayed in women’s track cycling over the last couple of years, and opportunities such as these are aligned with our vision to increase the depth of our participants.’

Cycling SA President, William Newman, says:  ‘With Women’s cycling being a key focus area for us in Africa, and around the world, an opportunity like this is a big step in the right direction to lift the exposure of our women cyclists.  I would like to thank the UCI for this great opportunity for our riders and the IOC who are providing support via Olympic Solidarity funding which was facilitated by SASCOC.’