Johnny Heineken: can anyone beat him?

Johnny Heineken and Steph Bridge have conquered the 2013 African Course Racing Championship in Soma Bay, Egypt.


The last day of racing - the medal battle - was tense. Everything was still at stake. Only the best three riders of both division could secure a ticket to the final.

In the Women's finals, series leader Steph Bridge had to be very careful as the reigning World Course Racing champion, Erika Heineken, was only one point behind her.

The wind had decreased and whilst tactics were trickier around the track, Bridge had the experience to stay out of trouble and win the first race, in a style which Heineken just couldn't match.

Heineken went into the deciding race purely focused on a win, and managed to hold onto second overall. The series victory went to Bridge and Katja Roose sat tight to claim third overall.

In the Men's fleet, reigning world champion Johnny Heineken had to protect his place from Italian Riccardo Leccese, young German Florian Gruber and the surprise performer of the day, Maxime Nocher.

In the first race Heineken easily took the lead, but during the last tense meters, Gruber slipped past and took the race win, delivering a major threat to Heineken's position.

Heineken changed his approach and played it conservatively in the deciding race to preserve his series victory, with the race glory going to Nocher.

Oswald Smith, from South Africa, claimed the overall title of 2013 African Course Racing champion and 2013 African Youth Course Racing champion.

Men:
Johnny Heineken (USA)
Florian Gruber (GER)
Maxime Nocher (FRA)

Women:
Steph Bridge (GBR)
Erika Heineken (USA)
Katja Roose (NED)

2013 African Course Racing Championship:
Oswald Smith (RSA)
Oscar Armstrong (RSA)
Omar Abdel Fattah (EGY)