The Freedom Challenge

The Freedom Challenge Race Across South Africa is an "unsupported" non-stage mountain bike race of approximately 2,300 km across South Africa. While recent winners have won in around 11 days, the race cut-off is 26 days. The race starts in Pietermaritzburg in early-to-mid-June, and ends in Paarl near Cape Town. Temperatures are known to drop as low as minus-10 deg. Celsius. While there are periodic "support stations" which will feed and accommodate riders should they require, the race is unsupported in the sense that riders must carry their own clothing and equipment, are responsible for their own maintenance and navigation (without the aid of GPS), and there are no marshalls or safety officials on the course (Race monitoring is done by satellite tracking). Estimates of cumulative ascent are around 37,000 metres, and the highest point on the route is approximately 2,700 metres above sea level. See the following link for an introductory slideshow by Mike Roy -

Wednesday, 4 July 2012

Daily wrap up - 4th July

  • Stephen Kellerman had an interesting night last night - after a navigation error which cost him some time, he ended up sleeping rough somewhere in the Koedeoeskop Reserve (between VandeVenterkraal and Toekomst)
  • Dino, Roman And Katarina went from Cambria to Dam se Drif today – one more stage and they’ll be out of the Baviaanskloof.
  • Travis and Burton left Prince Albert this morning and headed up the Swartberg Pass to Gamkaskloof - they had lunch and pushed on to Rouxpos.
  • ‘Die Wyn-trein’ (Gawie, Casper, Charl and Shaun) under the leadership of ‘Doctor Dop’ Casper, also made their way through Gamkaskloof today and got to Rouxpos, arriving early enough for another dop.
  • Tim and Jody left Rouxpos this morning and battled stiff headwinds to Anysberg. Tim decided he’d had enough and stopped at Anysberg. Jody battled on and arrived in Montagu just before 6pm.
  • Leaving from Anysberg this morning we had Peter, Johann, Andre and Lize. They all battled the same wind and mud so it was slow going to Montagu. Lize, Peter and Johann all opted to stay in Montagu. Andre just stopped for coffee before pushing on to McGregor, where he’s spending the night.
  • Today was the last day out on the trail for the Sensible Five – they left Trouthaven a bit later than planned due to some early morning rain but the weather cleared  and they still made good time up Stettynskloof. Waiting at the finish were a large group of supporters who didn’t have to wait too long – Allen and Richmond arrived just after 15h00 with Dawn, Chris and Rory coming in 20min later.

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