Cyclingnews set Cape Argus Pick n Pay Cycle Tour champions Herman Fouché and Anriëtte Schoeman another tough challenge – answering our most pressing questions about their respective wins.
1. What went through your mind the day before the event?
A: I was very relaxed and didn’t think too much about the race. I went for a really awesome group ride with the guys from Science2Sport and even stopped for coffee along the way to catch the vibe!
H: “We (Team Bonitas) have to win the race. There’s no finishing second; we have to win!” That puts a lot of stress on your shoulders but as part of this team it’s possible.
2. What was your pre-race breakfast?
A: I had my usual protein shake for breakfast and muesli with low-fat milk. I always bring my own stuff when I travel because I’m allergic to some nuts and stick to what I’m used to.
H: Muesli, an all-bran muffin and a Biogen bar on the way to the start.
3. During the race, how did you feel on a scale of 1 to 10?
A: I was really comfortable and fresh until I sat in the wrong position at the bottom of Chappies and literally sprinted up to fix my silly mistake. From there I knew I was going to pay for my effort, so on a scale from 1 to 10 on Suikerbossie I’d say 1! I suffered.
H: It’s the biggest race of the year for me, so even if you don’t feel 10 out of 10, you keep on telling yourself you’re a 10.
4. What was your toughest kilometre in the 2013 race?
A: The whole second half up Suikerbossie. I really had to dig so deep I forgot how deep I could go!
H: The last two kilometres.
5. At what point did you feel you might have lost your chance of winning?
A: I thought I wouldn’t make it to the top of Suikerbossie with the frontrunners because I was on my limit.
H: In the last kilometre with the Belgian rider (Kristof Vandewalle) trying to get away.
6. At what point did you feel you really could win?
A: I never really felt in control of the race. The Argus is such a gamble and so much could go wrong or right that, until you cross the finish line, you can’t ever count on a specific result. It’s very unpredictable and that’s what I love about it.
H: In the last 600 metres of the race when Team Bonitas had the perfect lead-out train in front of me.
7. Did you mark any specific rider in the race and why?
A: I absolutely just focused on the race and moved in the bunch where I felt comfortable. The bunch was so big that I just concentrated on keeping out of trouble and avoiding crashes by sitting towards the front.
H: Tyler Day. We knew he was on good form and a fast finisher.
8. If you had not won, based on performance throughout the race, who might have been a deserving winner?
A: Cherise Stander rode the most courageous race with her whole heart. After all she’s been through, it was the most inspiring thing I have ever seen to be in the race with her.
H: My team-mate Christoff van Heerden. He has been flying from the start of the season.
9. Take us through what you did the day after the event.
A: We went to the prize-giving the next morning at the Cullinan Hotel. It was so enjoyable, and then we still drove back to PE straight afterwards. So I spent the whole day on the road heading home.
H: The drive back to Joburg.
10. In total, how many hours will you spend on the bike over the next 30 days and why?
A: Haha, is that before or after my usual time off the bike after Argus? I had a bit of a cold last week so was forced to take a couple of days off. I will do a mini base with some structured shorter interval sessions, so on average 15 to 20 hours per week. And hopefully some time on my mountain bike.
H: Around 80 hours. Mzansi Tour is next and Team Bonitas is aiming high!
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