Zimbabwe’s junior women cycling representatives, Skye Davidson and Helen Mitchell, exceeded expectations today at the 2015 Africa Continental Cycling Championships in Durban, South Africa. Davidson and Mitchell, both students at Hellenic Academy, placed third and fourth respectively in the 24km time trials. Davidson finished the course in 46:50, less than three minutes behind winner Frances du Toit and second place finisher Lynette Benson, both of South Africa. Mitchell completed the course in a respectable 47:35.
The junior men from Zimbabwe, St John’s College students Chad Scallan and Luke Collins did not fare as well against the competition in their 24 km time trials today. Scallan finished 14th out of 20 riders in the field in a time of 41:19 which was six minutes behind winner Gregory de Vink of South Africa. Collins finished the course in 45:54 to place 19 out of 20. Second place was taken by Islam Mansouri of Algeria and third by El Mehdi Chokri of Morocco.
The four junior Zimbabwean riders will compete again on Thursday in 42 km (girls) and 65 km (boys) road races. They rest tomorrow, while the Championships continue with elite men’s and women’s time trial categories. Cycling is still a relatively new and elite sport in Zimbabwe, and the team hopes exposure from this championship will help them to attract more interest in the sport.