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Graham Jarvis Wins Roof of Africa 2013

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.

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Travis Teasdale to tackle THE ROOF

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.

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16 year old Wade Young, brings the title home

16 year old Wade Young, brings the title home

Wade Young (16) made history on Saturday (17 November) when he became the youngest competitor ever to win the Roof of Africa enduro motorcycle race that took place for the 45th time in the Mountain Kingdom of Lesotho. It was also the first time since 2007 that a South African rider wins this gruelling three day event that consisted of about 490 kilometres this year,Extremely hot weather conditions caused many competitors to dehydrate while a challenging route confirmed the 2012 Roof of Africa enduro as one of the toughest in recent years.

Wade Young 2012 Roof of Africa 2012 Winner
Wade Young

Young, racing for Team Fever Criterion Yamaha, took the lead on Friday when he posted the fastest time after starting the race from second position behind Marc Torlage (Proudly Bidvest Yamaha) who won the 60km time-trial that determined the starting order for Friday’s racing section. The youngster tackled the third and final day on Saturday (187km) with a gap of just over 10 minutes to the 2011 winner, Graham Jarvis (Flite Extreme Husaberg) and eventually beat second-placed fellow South African, Altus de Wet (Brother Broadlink KTM) by just over 11 minutes after a total race time of 17 hours 36 minutes and 10 seconds. (All race results are still provisional.)

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Get Lost in Lesotho – Maliba Road Trip

Get Lost in Lesotho – Maliba Road Trip

Get Lost in Lesotho..

‘We need to promote Lesotho as a whole – as its own destination.’ These were the words of my wife who is the marketing manager for Maliba Mountain Lodge, a 5 star lodge in the mountains of Lesotho. She was referring to the fact that Lesotho is one of the lesser known destinations on the tourism map – even for us South Africans. It is generally seen as a country which is hard to get to – as a place more suited to those looking for a hard core adventure with their rugged off road vehicles.

We therefore decided to set out on a road trip ourselves, to see the highlights of the country, and to determine the accessibility of this small, mountainous kingdom. To gain first-hand experience – as a group of young South Africans, with little time between work days for travelling– of the people and their cultures, the landscape and perhaps to learn a bit about the country and its history. At the same time, to film the entire adventure to try and capture some of the spirit and culture of the country and its people.

Our goal, as a group of five friends, was to travel over four days into the easily accessible parts of the country, without the need for serious back up and support.

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Graham Jarvis wins the Roof of Africa at first attempt

Graham Jarvis wins the Roof of Africa at first attempt

the 2011 roof of africaA new face to the Roof of Africa event, Graham Jarvis etched his name into the mountains of Lesotho when he won the legendary Roof of Africa event held this past weekend in Lesotho aboard his Husaberg TE 300.

The “Mother of hard enduro” is said to be the hardest enduro race in the world and that’s what the 44th running of this event was all about: a lot of blood and sweat, man and machine fighting their way through the mountain passes of Lesotho of which some have never been ridden before, taking the world’s best enduro riders to their limits and beyond.

The 2011 Roof of Africa kicked off on Thursday morning with the traditional “Round the Houses”, a 3 lap race in the city centre of Maseru that competitors had to complete on the tar.

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The History of Sani Pass

The History of Sani Pass

As most Lesotho adventure travelers are aware the Sani Pass is a must do on their travels around this little known country. Sani Pass is the only access from KwaZulu Natal to the Lesotho Highlands, the domain of the endangered Bearded Vulture, Basotho shepherds and their animals.

This steep zigzagging pass climbs the face of the Drakensberg escarpment to an altitude of 2874m. It’s generally not a difficult drive in any modern 4×4 vehicle and is a wonderfully scenic drive, if the weather plays its part.

Approaching Sani Top
Approaching Sani Top (Photo by Jonathan of Sani Top Chalets)

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The Roof of Africa, more than just a race!

The Roof of Africa, more than just a race!

The traditional Roof of Africa race has been running in various parts of Lesotho for more than 40 years now and this race has played an important role in growing tourism in the country. The environmental and social responsibilities of all visitors are, however, under the spotlight and the organisers of the 2010 Baboons Lesotho Sun Roof of Africa are busy with various initiatives to address these issues.

Roof of Africa 2010 Hubert Stanka

One of the goals of Adventure Lesotho (Pty) Ltd, is to ensure the participation of local communities so that they can benefit more from the race. Local community structures associated with the Roof of Africa race have been in place within the areas the race passes through for the past few years and are continuously strengthening.

The environmental responsibility includes a recycling programme as a long-term goal for this annual race. The organisers are also aiming to enhance environmental awareness with the mantra “Leave Only Tyre Marks Behind” as the ultimate goal. This aspect will be interwoven with rider responsibility and spectator education so as to reduce littering and promote sustainable waste disposal.

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