Windhoek Light Namib Quest
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The Namib Quest is a 6-day mountain bike stage race that begins in the historic capital city of Namibia, Windhoek and ends 6 days later in the famous coastal town of Swakopmund. The route will pass through the folded mountains of the Khomas Hochland, dropping down through the transition plateau into the famous Namib Desert and will include parts of the Namib Naukluft Park. Riders will have the privilege of passing through areas that are essentially closed to the general public.
The race format will be two-person teams and the riders are both expected to finish each stage together (see race rules).
The race will start on the 18th of May 2014 in the capital city Windhoek and end 6 days later on the 23rd of May 2014 in Swakopmund. Registration for the race will be held on Saturday, 17th of May 2014. Details regarding the registration and start venue will be sent to all competitors by way of newsletters.
Entry fees will be payable upon entry as per the following date lines:
Early Bird Entries (Aug’13 to 31st Oct’13) – N$ 18,000.00 (R 18,000.00) per team of 2 riders.
Normal Entries (1st Nov’13 to 28th Feb’14) – N$ 19,000.00 (R 19,000.00) per team of 2 riders.
Late Entries (1st Mar’14 to close of entries) – N$ 19,500.00 (R 19,500.00) per team of 2 riders.
Entries will open on 26th August 2013 and will close when 150 teams have registered and paid. You will receive an e-mail confirmation of your entry once the online registration process and credit card or EFT payment has been processed. Once registered, riders will receive regular updates pertaining to the event.
Solo Entries – will be considered on request and subject to participant experience and approval from event organizers.
Cost of solo entry – N$ 10 500.00.
Only team entries will be given a official event position, however solo entries will form part of the event timing and will be awarded event regalia on successful completion of the event.
Entries received after the 30th March 2014 will not be eligible for the events cycling shirt…
VIP Packages – Teams will be accommodated in large two man dome tents (2.5 x 2.5m), however VIP packages will be available at an additional cost of N$ 3,000.00 (Per team), which will entitle each team member to his / her own dome tent with metal bed.
Supporters Packages – a limited amount of Supporters Packages will be available (x20) whereby a team supporter plus vehicle will be allowed to follow the event. Cost of this package is N$ 6,000.00 per person and includes all accommodation, meals and race village facilities as what a event participant would receive, except the actual ride. Booking for this needs to be made early as there is limited space!
Shuttle Transfers – Transfer back to Whk can be booked – cost determined by number of pax.
Registration and Race Briefing:
Registration of the riders will take place on Saturday, 17th of May 2014 and the time and venue will be communicated to all registered riders by way of newsletters. All riders will be expected to check in at the various control points at registration where their bicycle will undergo inspection, their medical forms will be checked and signed and their personal information and entry details will be confirmed. They will then receive their official race packages that will include amongst others, their race numbers, stage information, latest race updates, etc.
The official race briefing will take place at 18:00 at the registration venue and is compulsory for all riders.
The race will officially start on Sunday, 18th of May 2014 in Windhoek and all riders will receive communication regarding the exact start venue. The first section of the race will be declared a neutral zone with riders being lead through the city until they reach the “official” race start.
Accommodation prior to the race in Windhoek will be available at various guest house establishments and hotels and a list of recommended accommodation facilities will be sent to all registered riders. It remains the rider’s own responsibility to organize and book their own accommodation. All accommodation, meals and refreshments prior to the race start on Sunday the 18th of May, are for the account of the riders and are to be paid directly by them. The organizers will do their best to assist where possible and will be available to give advice as to what alternative establishments are available for accommodation should riders wish to stay at a venue not on the list.
The race will end in the coastal town of Swakopmund where a post race prize giving will be held. Details of the venue will be made available to riders via newsletter. Accommodation in Swakopmund is once again the responsibility of each rider and we will be sending out information regarding the various options that exist to riders via newsletters.
Event difficulty / Preparation
Take time to study the route distances and profiles available under EVENTS – RACE ROUTE.
Often the question is asked – How difficult is the route and at what level of fitness must one be to be able to complete the 6 days? This is normally a difficult question to answer as all people have different levels of ability , endurance etc, also each rider will have a different perspective of what a difficult day in the saddle would entail. We will try to provide some perspective of what to expect, based on our own cycling experience and feed back received from previous participants.
The first four days of the event takes riders through the Khomas Hochland plateau separating Windhoek from the Namib Desert and eventually the Atlantic ocean. These four days will comprise a lot of hilly terrain, short hard climbs, short technical decents, some long climbs, varying from gradual gradient to steep sections. Up side is that what goes up must come down, therefore some spectacular descents will be experienced as well. In terms of intensity of the days ride, if you have managed stages on the W2W or Sani then you will be able to manage a day on the Namib Quest…however remember this is a six day event! Half way through day four you will commence a long very fast technical decent down into the Namib Desert…possibly one of the most spectacular descents you will do on a event!! You will also be rewarded at the end of this day in the most scenic location of all the race villages, which is quite something as all the race villages are located in remote wild places.
Day 5 will entail a time trial covering a a mostly flat traverse of the “Tinkas” plains in the Namib Desert. A few sections of loose sand will be encountered however the majority of the stage terrain will enable a fast race pace. Wildlife sightings should be optimum during this stage with Zebra, Oryx, Springbok and many other species being in abundance.
Day 6 is the longest stage (105km) of the event, however one of the fastest. Terrain is extremely flat, in fact one descends a total of 900m over this distance. Route conditions start off with a good hard jeep track, becoming a well graded national route and eventually a section of tar leading into Swakopmund. A last little reminder of the adventure will be provided in the last few hundred meters to the end point, whereby some technical paths will see you ending a few meters away from the Atlantic ocean. As we would like the field to finish in Swakopmund within as close a time as possible, we stagger the mornings start in two or three groups, depending on speed of riders. With slowest riders starting first followed by quickest last, ensuring a good spread of the field, which enables groups to ride together and experience the desert as one.
All finishers will receive an official “Finishers” shirt as well as a meal commemorating their achievement. All riders who enter will also receive preferred entry into the following years event (pending acceptance and payment), and preferential entry onto the waiting list for future events should they not be able to take part in the following years event.
All questions regarding the event and any details pertaining thereto can be directed to the organizers via the website and we will be happy to get back to you and assist where possible.