TRAVEL & TOURISM
FEARLESS DRIVERS INVITED TO JOIN 4X4 CHALLENGE
Annual event aims to raise K540,000 for conservation
Skilled and fearless drivers are being challenged to demonstrate their prowess this month by taking part in the country’s toughest 4×4 off-road challenge.
Competitors in the annual Elephant Charge cross-country event have the added satisfaction of helping to raise for leading conservation projects and environmental causes, which are expected to receive some K540,000 from this year’s drive.
The gruelling eight-hour driving event is scheduled to take place over Independence weekend and has so far attracted 18 team entries, which will compete over a course in a remote area of bush around Lusaka with the aim of covering the course from start to finish in the shortest distance.
Drivers and their navigators and crew are thus required to negotiate ravines, streams, rocky terrain and other hazards, testing their driving skills and the reliability of their vehicles to the limit.
Several hundred spectaculars and officials are also expected to join in the fun, the location of which will be kept secret until the week of the event.
This is the sixth year the Elephant Charge is being held. Last year’s event raised K425,000, a K30,000 increase on the K395,000 given to conservation in 2011.
“Elephant Charge raises more money for conservation than any other Zambian event,” said Jo Pope, one of the organisers of the event and a linchpin in conservation efforts. “The idea is for participants and spectators to have a fun weekend while collecting as much money as possible to support organisations who are working hard to ensure the future of Zambia’s natural heritage.”
“Originally inspired by the Kenyan Rhino Charge this fun-filled, family event takes nerve! 4×4 enthusiasts are challenged to the brink, racing around a thrilling course in the Zambian bush against the clock, the GPS and not to mention the other adrenalin-fuelled competitors. The most daring team will complete all of the check-points in the shortest distance, winch up cliffs and down ravines to claim the much prized trophy. The event demands stamina and navigational skills as well as the ultimate team tactics,” said Sarah Davies of Conservation Lower Zambezi
.A maximum of 35 teams, including up to five motorbike teams, will take part in this year’s charge. The entry fee is K2,500 per team, which must pledge to raise at least K4,000 from sponsorship for the chosen charities.
Beneficiaries of this year’s Elephant Charge include North Luangwa Conservation Programme, South Luangwa Conservation Society, Conservation Lower Zambezi, Conservation Lake Tanganyika, Kasanka Trust, Game Rangers International, Children in the Wilderness, Chipembele, Project Luangwa, Wildlife and Environmental Conservation Society of Zambia and Bird Watch Zambia.
More information can be found online at www.elephantcharge.org
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