Thursday, August 06, 2009


"For cyclists of another category the Cape Town Municipality now constructed, at the junction of the Main and Portswood Roads, the Green Point Cycle Track, which was opened in October, 1897. A stone's throw away, near Boundary Road, there lived a young Green Point man, then in his twenties, whose spare time was given over almost entirely to cycling. This was Jack Rose, and no story of cycling in South Africa would be complete without reference to the World Amateur Record set up by Jack Rose at the Green Point Cycle Track in 1899, when he covered just under 30 miles in one hour. In 1900 he improved on this record by covering over 30 miles. This, it is believed, was the fastest speed hitherto attained on land other than by a locomotive. Shortly after achieving his record Jack Rose - Col. J.G. Rose, as he is known today - was caught up in the Boer War and, enthusiastic cyclist that he was, he formed the Cape Colony Cyclist Corps. In the First World War, after serving in South West Africa and on General Smuts' staff in East Africa, he was awarded the D.S.O. and the Croix de Guerre. In the Second World War, once again on General Smuts' staff, he was largely responsible for the organization of Transport during the South African campaigns 'up North'." Marischal Murray, Under Lion's Head, pg. 81.

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