Kouga geared for biggest adventure race

2017-05-11 06:02

SEVEN days, 500km, epic challenges, tough routes, raw adventure . . . reward your soul and awaken your passion.

The final countdown to Africa’s biggest adventure race, Expedition Africa - Baviaans, has begun. Some 39 teams from 13 countries will be taking part in the gruelling 500km adventure race, set to take place in the Kouga and Baviaans areas of the Eastern Cape from 12 to 21 May 2017.

The event will be hosted by the Kouga Local Tourism Organisation and the host venue will be the Cape St Francis Resort.

The organisers, Stephan and Heidi Muller, have kept the start of Expedition Africa a secret. Media, supporters and athletes will only receive communication regarding the route, disciplines and transitions incorporated in this year’s race at the opening ceremony, which will take place at Cape St Francis Resort at 14:00 on Friday, May 12. The race will officially kick off on Sunday morning at 07:00.

Families, friends and supporters alike will be able to cheer on their teams via a live tracking feed which will feature a leader board, all transition areas and checkpoints along the route. The live tracking feed can be accessed at www.expafrica.live.

Local supporters will have the opportunity to meet these amazing athletes at designated transition areas, all visible on the live tracking event page.

This year’s Expedition Africa race will not only be a physical struggle but a mental one.

Teams have a rugged adventure race to look forward to, as they are expected to race through a carefully designed course, incorporating all the challenging, yet beautiful attractions the glorious Baviaans and Kouga regions have to offer.

“Teams will trek, kayak and cycle through extremely remote areas, venturing where few humans have set foot before. Expedition Africa 2017’s teams will explore both magnificent mountain ranges and the beautiful coastlines of the Eastern Cape,” says Muller.

Mark these Dates

  • Cape St Francis Resort at 14:00 on Friday, May 12 - the introduction of the 39 teams from 13 countries.
  • Witness the flag parade at Seal Point Lighthouse at 10:30 on May 13. Teams will march from the Cape St Francis Resort to the Seal Point Lighthouse carrying their official country flags. A small “monument” will be built to commemorate the event. All are welcome.
  • 07:00 on Sunday, May 14 (venue to be announced on Friday). Follow the first few kilometres of the race through the greater St Francis.
  • Cape St Francis Resort on Wednesday, May 17 - the first teams should start arriving back at the Cape St Francis Resort. They will need all the support they can get.

What is Expedition Africa?

  • A 500km non-stop (no sleep) race where teams navigate themselves from control point to control point.
  • They only receive a map and compass, and that is it. The route is not marked, and is kept secret until race day.
  • Teams are 4-members strong, of which one must be female.
  • They trek (hike), cycle and kayak. Mountaineering can be included.
  • The route includes the greater St Francis area, Jeffreys, the entire Gamtoos Valley, a portion of the Baviaanskloof Wilderness Area, and Tsitsikamma.

Why is it important to the region?

  • The event gives residents the chance to showcase the area as the best holiday destination to nature and sports lovers. Each team gets a tracking device, so their families, supporters, sponsors, ex-racers and likeminded sports people can follow this race live on www.kougatourism.com. Last year 80 000+ people followed the race every day.

What must you do?

  • Become a dotwatcher - follow these teams and if you see a team is close to you – jump off your chair and go support them. Professional teams are not allowed any food/drinks, but a cheer is always welcome.
  • Go to the Transition Areas and give the teams the moral support they need.

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