Having branched out from mountain biking into road cycling three years ago Candice Parker-Dennison will now look to tackle the 111km route of the Msunduzi Road Challenge cycle race, on 30 October in Pietermaritzburg. Photo: Gameplan Media

Talented and well-known junior female cyclist Candice Parker-Dennison has added her name to the list of participants who will tackle the inaugural Msunduzi Road Challenge cycle race in Pietermaritzburg on 29 and 30 October.

The exciting KZN South Coast youngster, better known for her mountain biking abilities, branched out into road cycling three years ago and is thoroughly looking forward to tackling the 111km distance of the new event in a couple of weeks’ time.

The talented young cyclist is the youngest female rider -- by nine years -- to have entered the inaugural Msunduzi Road Challenge cycle race thus far. Photo: Gameplan Media“I’m not too sure what to expect with it being a brand new race and I don’t know much about the route at all but I’m definitely looking forward to giving it my all and seeing how things go,” said Parker-Dennison.

“I’ve been focusing quite a bit on my road cycling this year and things have been going nicely for me so far. I recently won the Junior ladies race of the Durban leg of the Engen Dynamic so hopefully I can just keep it going at the Msunduzi Road Challenge.

“Whilst I’ll obviously be trying my best, I’m also just going out there to enjoy it as much as I can,” she added. The young Scottburgh High pupil will celebrate her eighteenth birthday just days before the race, making her the youngest female entry to have passed across Cycling South Africa’s desk thus far and a full nine years younger than any other female participant.

However, despite the rather substantial age gap, Parker-Dennison is determined to put her hand up and compete with the rest of the ladies field regardless of her age. “I didn’t know I was the youngest until recently. That’s actually pretty cool!” chuckled Parker-Dennison.

She did however admit that she’d have to work a little harder with the ladies starting separately to the men. “It’s a lot easier to fall off the bunch when there are less of you on the road but I’m pretty used to riding with the older ladies now so it won’t have too much of an effect on me.”


Msunduzi Road Challenge Fast Facts:

Date: Saturday 29th October and Sunday 30th October 2011
Venue: Alexander Park, Pietermaritzburg, KwaZulu-Natal
Distances: Road Race – 126km; 111km, 90km
Distance: Time Trial – 27km
Entry Fees: Road Race – R200 ($ 30.00 or € 25.00)
Entry Fees: Time Trial – R120 ($ 20.00 or € 15.00)


Prospective participants can enter online here, and further detailed information about the Msunduzi Road Challenge can be found on the event website.

For general event queries, contact Alec Lenferna at alec@realem.co.za, and for all entry-related queries, contact Tarryn Duncan at tarryn@cyclingsa.com.