Nedbank Desert Dash launched

This year's edition of the popular Nedbank Desert Dash was officially launched in the capital yesterday, with organisers promising to make the event much bigger and better.

This year's race, which will be the 13th Nedbank Desert Dash, is set to take place on December 8-10 and riders will grill each other on the gravel road that links Windhoek and Swakopmund.

According to the organisers, the country's biggest cycling race will again be expected to attract hundreds of top riders from as far as Spain, Germany, Australia, India, Poland and Austria, as well as neighbour South Africa

Regarding the route, riders will pedal it out from Windhoek on the gravel road stretching over 370 km all the way to the coastal town of Swakopmund. As per the race's tradition, the route must be fully covered and completed within 24 hours.

Speaking at the launch of the Desert Dash, Nedbank Namibia chief operational officer Richard Meeks said this year they are ready to offer an even greater experience with a number of innovations.

I am always astounded by the popularity of the Nedbank Desert Dash, particularly if one considers how quickly the available entries are snapped up in the four-person teams. This year the Desert Dash will have cyclists representing 16 nations competing for top honours, he said.

He added that the cyclists coming from abroad will come to Namibia with their families and will use Air Namibia, rent cars, book accommodation and spend money in the country.

We at Nedbank Namibia are happy to say that the Desert Dash is adding to the country's economic growth, Meeks said.

Individual rider Konnie Looser, from Switzerland, won the solo men's category for two years in a row in 2015 and 2016. Rene Schoeman won the solo women's race last year.

Namibian cyclist Tjipe Murangi and his South African teammate Max Knox also successfully retained the title, which they first won as a two-man team in 2015.

The race covers six stages and riders can participate in teams of two or four persons. Namibian Mannie Heymans, who completed the race in just 12 hours, 13 minutes, holds the current record across all categories.

Source: New Era Newspaper Namibia