Sappi Scottburgh MTB & Trail Running Weekend Media Service


27 June 2018

  Written by: Nick Tatham

Hill expecting exciting Scottburgh MTB tussle

Scottburgh – Two-time defending Sappi Scottburgh MTB & Trail Run Weekend champion Andrew Hill is looking forward to another exciting edition of the race as it heads into its tenth year in 2018 over the weekend of 21-22 July.

The South Coast classic has shown longevity that many races have lacked while still remaining true to itself. Hill believes that there are a number of factors that have influenced the popularity of the race over such a long period.

“It comes down, a lot, to the people that are involved in the race,” the Upper Highway resident mentioned. “Flavio (Scarpa) has always been so involved and passionate about the race that he has made it easy for people to come back.

“The trails are awesome and it is a great opportunity for people that aren’t from around the area to get down the coast and ride.

“Flavio also has a great bunch of people that help him every year and having a strong group of volunteers also adds a lot of value to a race.”

With the 45km Sappi Scottburgh MTB Race making up a leg of the 2018 Quattro ROAG Series, there is a lot more for the riders to ride for and although there will be athletes hoping to grab vital series points Hill will not see that as his focus.

“I will obviously go out there to get a good result and hopefully win but I have missed too many ROAG Series races this year to be in contention unfortunately.

“So I want to have as much fun as I can racing against my friends.

“I will be taking on this year’s race more for the enjoyment than anything but I will be hoping to do well.”

It has been a busy first half of the year for Hill who has been racing throughout the country and performing well in the longer marathon events. Having won the ROAG Series four times he is not concerned that he won’t be in contention for a fifth this year.

“It’s a wonderful series and it has done so much for mountain biking in KZN and I will let someone else win it this year,” he joked.

“The series has really raised the bar in terms of racing in the province and to have guys like Stuart Marais and Julian Jessop involved can only enhance its reputation.”

Racing at the sharp end of the field in KwaZulu-Natal often involves racing the same riders each weekend. Over the years Hill has developed strong relationships with his fellow elite riders and racing friends is something he enjoys.

“Off the bike we are all mates and will sit down after a race and have a beer or a cool drink and share thoughts and ideas.

“I’ve got good friendships with the other guys and we do quite a bit of training together and it gives us the chance to share our strengths with each other which is great fun.

“In a race situation it also helps because you are more likely going to work with someone that you know against people you don’t than not so we do tend to work together to get an advantage,” Hill explained.

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2018 Sappi Scottburgh MTB and Trail Run Weekend logo - JPEG


TIB Insurance's Andrew Hill will be out to defend his Sappi Scottburgh MTB & Trail Run Weekend title when he lines up for the Sappi 45km marathon on Sunday, 22 July 2018.

Anthony Grote/
Gameplan Media

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