On 15 May 2016, Jennifer Niksch and Jet de Wet will be heading off on Expedition Africa, a 500km adventure race along the Garden Route in the Western Cape. Why? To raise funds and awareness about clubfoot and how it can be treated – and for the sheer adventure of it!
This extreme race consists of several disciplines, including mountain biking, trekking, kayaking, orienteering, rope work, swimming and canyoneering. According to the event website, the race is expected to take the teams anywhere between 72 hours (“excluding sleep”!), and six days.
Before they set off, we asked Jennifer a few questions about Expedition Africa.
How did you get into adventure racing?
I live in Knysna and our area is the playground of adventure racing. I love the outdoors and enjoy multi-sports as opposed to just focusing on one discipline.
What made you decide to undertake this race for STEPS?
I know Karen [the founder of STEPS] and Alex [Karen’s son] and believe that the work the foundation has done is a worthwhile cause with measurable results. One in every 500 children are born with clubfoot and seeing as this is a 500km race, it makes sense to dedicate it to STEPS.
What are you most looking forward to?
Being outdoors and the beauty of our surroundings. Also the comradeship of the teams.
What are you most apprehensive about?
The distance and the cold. 500km is a long way.
Who are you racing with?
A guy I never met until today. His name is Jet de Wet and he is 29 and comes from up country. He called me on Monday and asked if I would race with him as his partner had pulled out. It’s only the two of us. Most teams have four members. Turns out that Jet has had a tough life, moved a lot, broken home. I lost my husband to cancer last year and am 47, so we make an interesting combination.
How can people sponsor you to raise funds/awareness for STEPS?