Archive for Festivals and Events

The Lesotho Ultra Trail 2013 – from the Race Director

At the end of the day a race director knows more about how their event rolls out than anybody else, that is the way it should be. So much happened at the Lesotho Ultra Trail 2013 that no one person there will know everything, not even the Race Director Andrew Booth who has penned his thoughts here.

Race Director Andrew Booth

A count down from 10 and 92 runners set-off on a 50km course layed out in Northern Lesotho’s Tsehlanyane National Park. With 2500m of climbing and sanctioning by the International Skyrunning Federation and South African Skyrunning Association, it was Africa’s first Ultra Skymarathon. Months of work was being put to the test, the next 12 hours would determine success, failure or mediocrity. Read more

Inaugural Lesotho Ultra Trail takes African running to new heights

Lesotho Ultra Trial LogoRunners from all over South Africa, as well as an international contingent from Belgium, Australia, Spain, North America, Britain and Canada, descended upon Maliba Mountain Lodge in the heart of the Maluti Mountains on Friday 29th November to participate in the Lesotho Ultra Trail – Africa’s first Ultra SkyMarathon®

Stormy weather in the days preceding the race kept organisers KZN Trail Running and Maliba Mountain Lodge staff on their toes as final preparations were made.

“The mountains are unpredictable as was the build up to race day,” commented race director Andrew Booth of KZN Trail Running. “We had to work around the afternoon thunderstorms when marking and do as much as we could in advance to ensure we were ready for crunch time. Having some of the elite athletes at Maliba days before the race added immensely to the vibe. We knew what we where working for, the event had huge potential and we had to pull it off.” Read more

Graham Jarvis Wins Roof of Africa 2013

Graham Jarvis winner of the Roof of Africa 2013 celebrates at the finnish line
 
Graham Jarvis has ensured a winning debut for the new era of Husqvarna in Hard Enduro by securing victory at the 2013 Roof of Africa.

Cold and wet conditions greeted competitors on the final day of the 2013 Roof of Africa. With more than 10 riders failing to make it to the finish on Friday and spending the night in the Mountains, it was going to prove to be another extremely challenging day for all the riders.

Chris Birch, Graham Jarvis, Blake Gudzeit and Altus De Wet were all penalized 3 minutes overnight for failing to report to DSP 2 on Friday, but Birch and Jarvis still held an substantial lead over the rest of the field and lead out this morning’s start just seconds apart. Read more

Travis Teasdale to tackle THE ROOF

Travis TeasdaleThe sixteen-year-old Travis Teasdale has competed in many forms of dirt bike racing in his short career – from motocross to the Junior Off-road Championship and enduro races, but it will be the first time the newly-crowned Junior National Champion will tackle the ‘Roof of Africa’ that takes place from 14 to 16 November in Lesotho. This extreme enduro race is renown as one of the toughest and most gruelling motorcycle events in the world and is the ultimate enduro motorcycle race for many riders – young and old.

Racing for Team Brother Broadlink KTM, the Grace College scholar from Pietermaritzburg has dreamed about competing in the ‘Roof of Africa’ from an early age, but he had to wait until after his sixteenth birthday in July for his dream to materialise. This year, after clinching his second Junior National Off-road Championship title (he won the 125cc Class Championship title last year and the Open Class Championship this year) and winning the E2 (200cc) Class at the final round of the Liquorland SA National Enduro Motorcycle Championship at Matatiele where he finished third overall, he will at last walk into the Lesotho Sun Hotel on Wednesday (13 November) to complete the documentation process for him to be able to be on the start line for the 46th ‘Roof of Africa’ in Lesotho. Read more

The North Face is partnering the Lesotho Ultra Trail

The North Face Logo in RedThe North Face South Africa continues to develop its focus on the local trail running market by announcing its partnership with the Lesotho Ultra Trail.

As the 2013 trail running season slowly draws to a close, the event has remained firmly in the sights of many of the country’s top athletes, highlighting all the future prospects of a race that is sure to be recognized as one of Africa’s premier outings in years to come. Read more

Lesotho Ultra Marathon next month!

organizers-logoThe fire has tested Maliba in the last couple of weeks but the one thing that remains constant is the enthusiasm and excitement for the Lesotho Ultra Marathon, set for 30 November 2013.

It is Africa’s first Ultra Sky Running Marathon and Maliba Lodge is privileged to be the host for this event.

Our race organsier Andrew Booth, from KZN Trail Running talks about the event coming up. Read more

Lesotho Wildrun Set to Dazzle Again

Lesotho-wildrun-logoThe fourth Lesotho Wildrun is set to take place in March 2014 and trail runners from across South Africa are raring to make the trek to their neighbouring country for a weekend of inspiration and perspiration.

The first Lesotho Wildrun took place in 2011 when 28 runners attempted to make the trek from Ramabanta up the Semonkong Plateau, past the Maletsunyane Gorge and Maletsunyane Falls and back down to Ramabanta via Baboon’s Pass. The route has since been changed to start close to the mountain village of Malealea but runners still get to experience Lesotho mountain life in a way that not many people have experienced it. Read more

Lesotho Sky MTB Challenge Recce

Day 1 – Lesotho has been on my travel radar, but not so you’d notice … Little land-locked country nestling somewhere against KZN and the Free State, with loads of mountains, dodgy roads and not much else to write home about. Right? How wrong can one be …

Lesotho Sky 2013 - Jacques Marais 03The Mountain Kingdom is everything you can want in an African travel destination, with a dizzying selection of action options vying for the attention of Outsiders from around the globe. It’s not even that far away – Maseru is less than 2hrs from Bloem along a peach of a highway – so no more excuses. And the one thing you cannot afford to leave behind when you cross the border to visit your Basotho brethren? Your mountain bike, buddy, because you’re gonna ride till you get used to the thin air up there.

My first day with the Lesotho Sky MTB Challenge crew (Christian Schmidt and Darol Howes) was relatively laid-back, with us exploring the time trail route within the immediate vicinity of Maseru for this kick-ass Stage Race … 3hrs of cattle-track tripping, donga dashing and pavement cruising eventually got us to Scoopie’s Shebeen, where I was initiated into the pleasures of Africa’s leading brew, Maluti, in quarts, of course.

Any Maseru sojourn is seriously incomplete without a visit to either the Oo-Lah-Lah Coffee Shop or Tumisang Taabe‘s Bike Shop, both institutions in their own right. Best of all, this was just the start of my journey into Africa’s ‘Little Tibet’.

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2013 Lesotho Ultra Trail Sells Out

organizers-logoWith such an amazing skyrunning location on offer, coupled with confirmation of some of the world’s best athletes, it was no surprise that entries into the inaugural Lesotho Ultra Trail – Africa’s first Ultra Skymarathon® were sold out within weeks of them opening, affirming its place on the world trail and skyrunning calendar. Runners from South Africa as well as from all over the world including Australia, India and the USA, ensured they did not miss the opportunity to secure their spot on the start line of this high altitude, African running experience, snatching up the valuable slots in a mere 15 days. Read more

Lesotho Wildrun 2013 – Pure & Unimaginable

The 34 runners who made it to the start line of the 2013 Lesotho Wildrun

The 34 runners who made it to the start line of the 2013 Lesotho Wildrun

The Lesotho Wildrun is a pure mountain running journey through the magnificent, remote and wild mountain kingdom of Lesotho. This three-day, 120km mountain wilderness experience takes place through the Ketane Ha Mothibi and Thaba Putsoa ranges, roughly 60km SE from the Lesotho capital of Maseru.  The unrivaled magnificence of this mountain kingdom promises participants trail running like none they’ve experienced before. Read more

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