Just weeks before the start of Expedition Africa, the MERRELL Adventure Addict’s preparations have suffered a major setback. After winning the event in 2011, the team has high hopes for the second edition, which now forms part of the Adventure Racing World Series (ARWS).
The MERRELL Adventure Addicts have been a prominent Adventure Racing unit in South Africa over the past few years, competing in numerous ARWS, including finishing 7th at the 2011 Adventure Racing World Championships.
Expedition Africa is a 500km, multi-discipline event, where teams of four navigate using a map, compass and landmarks. Disciplines include; mountain biking, trekking, kayaking, swimming, rope work and orienteering. The first team to complete all the race legs and visit all the checkpoints will be declared the winner.
During a preparatory event, the MERRELL Tsitsikamma MTB race, Hanno Smit came off his bike on one of the descents, breaking his collarbone in the process. The injury has ruled him out of action for the foreseeable future, which comes as a blow to a team who pride themselves on dynamics.
“It is just devastating to lose Hanno in this way,” comments Donovan Sims. “He is the wise old man of the team and his experience and influence on the team will be sorely missed.”
Craig Carter-Brown, a cattle farmer from Ixopo, will replace Smit, bringing true grit, dedication and commitment to the team. The Adventure Addict is worthy of his title, having recently won the Garmin Wartrail.
Photographs courtesy of Nikki Smit and Craig Kolesky