Extreme Antarctic athletes warm up

2011-12-30 22:06

Johannesburg - Weather permitting - Tuesday will see three South Africans among 16 extreme athletes in seven teams head off in a race on foot and with sleds across freezing Antarctica to the South Pole.

The 2012 Scott-Amundsen Centenary Race commemorates the centenary of the duel by explorers Briton Robert Falcon Scott and Norwegian Ronald Amundsen to reach the world's southern tip.

The Scandinavian won on December 14 1911 when he planted the flag of his country at 90° South (the South Pole's longitude position is considered undefined and irrelevant). Scott reached the spot on January 17 1912, never to return.

Scott's homeland has entered Team Britain Blue and Team Britain Green in the epic race, organised by Extreme World Races. Amundsen's has entered Team Framdrift.

Team Mission Impossible is made up of two legendary South African adventurers: Peter Malherbe, who ran the length of the Great Wall of China covering 4 000km in about 100 days and Peter van Kets, who rowed 5 500km across the Atlantic.

The other South African, James Raaff, is in Team Tri-National along with Irishman Gavin Moran and German Frank Runge.

The Anglo-Dutch team has the race's only woman, Yoyo Schepers-Menten, and Team Britain Blue has Marc Woods whose left leg was amputated due to cancer.

The seventh team represents Wales.

The teams' first mission is to reach Tuesday's starting point, on an escarpment 704km from the South Pole.

Team Mission Impossible

According to a media release issued by Woolworths, one of Team Mission Impossible's sponsors, the team and its crew departed for the starting point from the Novo Russian Antarctic Research Base on Christmas Eve on Friday.

The temperature was minus 23°.

"This leg took the adventurers on a spectacular climb up the escarpment.

"The teams utilised the opportunity to get acclimatised to the high altitude of 3 000 metres above sea level.

"They also did ski training and emergency drills."

On Thursday night, Malherbe tweeted: "Hectic day. Serious crevasse fields so had to climb very steep slopes with 80kg behind but the beauty lifts my spirit. In awe."

Team Mission Impossible has dedicated itself to environmental causes.

"It is the reason I am here to save our planet and I strongly believe that if we all do one thing, we can collectively save our beautiful earth," the press release quoted Malherbe saying.

Team Tri-National's cause is the Keep a Child Alive campaign.

The race can be followed on www.coldsweat.tv

Read more on:    antarctica

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
3 comments
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

 
PARTNER CONTENT
INFOGRAPHIC: New thinking required for retirement

Everything we believe about retirement is fast becoming outdated.

/News

Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.