2300km, but where to start?

As you can imagine, a 19day epic generates a fair amount of copy.

You can go right to the beginning of the whole ordeal, or the startline/day 1.

I'm looking at moving from a general ride report to a more up to date what's happening site. Yes, Freedom Challenge doesn't just finish in Paarl! When i get round to it, there'll be a PDF of the 19days reports.

Send some feedback (I'm aware that the whole layout is just, well kinda rubbish!)

Friday, June 20, 2008

Pushing hard for "the front of the field"

The intrepid deep south hero, Boegs, Buffoon number 1, Stevie, Stevo, is pushing hard on the trail with fellow FC racer, Tim James.

Last nights contact, was that they’d decided to stay put as Tim was soggy as a wet loaf of bread at a light sabre contest. I suspect Tim will prove most useful later on in the race. Either for his knowledge of the course or if they get trapped in a crevasse and Stevo has to eat him to survive.

Think the tracking system on the FC website is alright, but what's confusing is just when everybody started, as they were started off in batches a day apart. There is also the ‘ride to Rhodes’ which is confusing the issue, with extra competitors that are going to stop in a few days. Man that’s like Frankie Fredricks pace setting for the first 200m of a 5000m dash.

10:30 am today, the wonder kid and his much older side kick, had already reached the check point for today's stage and were pushing through to the next one at Vuvu, like a fat chick at a buffet line. As Steve put it, this will put them at "the front of the field", with the first group who started a day ahead of Steve and 2 days ahead of Tim.

After Vuvu, they head off for approx 210km or so in search of South Africa's only ski-resort, Rhodes. If all goes well and given their strength and determination at the moment, we might be expecting them to touch down late Sunday evening, in time for the last chairlift run up the slope. Although reading the warnings and notices on their given direction list, I think they may have an easier time winning the Zim run-off elections. With the weather system busy lashing the Cape like a drunk headmaster in the old days, the bold print warnings of 'this track should be not be undertaken in poor visibility or bad weather' and 'an unridable ascent of 1000 metres of 5kms' will sure make for a fun weekend ahead.

Keep following the saga right as it continues to unfold. We'll try post daily updates on Stevie's progress, as well as any buffoon messages we manage to decode from him.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

First contact

After a few technical hitches on our side and some technical hitches with the tracking setup of the organisers, we've had our first official contact with our blanket obsessed, santa cruz riding, international man of mystery.

After surviving day 2 which was purported to have been muddier than an uzbeki all women’s wrestling match. We recieved a somewhat hurried phonecall this afternoon at 3, stevie was busy trying to make a call as to whether or not he should double up today, pushing through the check point, collecting his icecream tub full of sweeties and riding into the night to finish a stage ahead. Risky tactics but he sounded far too chipper after 140km today. Which leads me to believe one thing and one thing only. He's been sitting slipstreaming someones tail all day. Damn slacker. Word out is that Tim James, last years runner up pulled a sneaky double yesterday to catch up to Steve after starting a day behind. They're now riding together, although the words used where 'this guys platt, he's just slowing me down'. You tell 'em stevie, you tell 'em.

Brandishing the number 35, with vehement disregard for the racing ahead of him, Stevie's nothing but smack talk. We expect nothing less.

Pictures and more to follow tomorrow.