Don’t want to be launching too deep down this one… It’s a big drop!Sometimes it’s just too hot for gloves, hey Jaydan Durandt. The start was manic! Images don’t tell the true story of the speed of the bunch up here on the opening lap. That sprint by Johan van Zyl (10) was truly impressive. Hatherly never let Koretzky open a gap. A solid ride by Philip Buys into P4 overall. P26 for Western Cape’s Thomas Hudson.The pack was tight in the early laps.Anne Terpstra raced on tired legs today and wasn’t in contention as a result. It’s been a massive training camp here in SA. How slack does that XC bike look! There’s some special prototype things going on there that we weren’t allowed to shoot or talk about. Pretty trick stuff.Kai von During and David Nordemann bounce up the Gutter Climb.‘Pick up sticks’ is a walk in the park for these guys. | *Click to enlargeSecond-generation racing talent Justin Chesterton lines up the step-down. The fastest lap of the day went to Alan Hatherly with an 11:30. Nobody else came within 20 seconds of that blitz, and he clocked that on the penultimate lap of the 7-lap race. Incredible.Stellenbosch local Andrea Schoffmann floats the flow line.In the end, there was simply nobody who could match the pace of this guy and Alan had time to cruise the last lap of the finish arena…… before being swamped by fans and media.P2 went to Koretzky.Nicely done Alan.Candice Lill crossed the line as the first South African, with a P4 overall.Yes Faranak!The gees amongst competitors is high.Good luck for your 2023 World Cup (and World Tour!) season Alan.