The inaugural Kudu Classic welcomed a small but keen group of runners to the Eildon mountains. Most runners arrived on the Friday afternoon, registered, received their race packs and set up camp in the race village in the lush Lucerne next to the Baviaans River. Runners gathered in the shearing shed where they were welcomed, briefed on the upcoming race, and served delicious homemade kudu pie to ensure high energy levels for Day 1 of the race. After dinner activities included sipping wine under the stars, and some friendly scoping out of the competition! Others opted for an early night, and headed back to their comfortable tents.
Runners woke to a misty Saturday morning, but after a hot cup of coffee and a breakfast of kings the sun peaked through and the race began. A sizable climb up the mountain got the bodies warmed up, making the technical rope section a walk in the park for most! With the hard work behind them, runners were cheered on by friendly locals at the water points and treated to a fantastic view of the valley as they made the easy run home. Hungry runners, sunkissed from the trail enjoyed a few well-deserved G&T’s and hearty lasagne for lunch. Afternoon naps under the trees near the river seemed to be a popular activity in the afternoon, followed by high tea in the beautiful rose garden.
After the rugby, a traditional EC braai with farm chops and roosterkoek was on the menu, with new friends gathering around the fire to shared ‘war stories’ from the day’s trails. Filled with farm fresh air from a day of adventure in the veld runners took to their beds in anticipation of Day 2 challenges!
Runners woke on Day 2, feeling slightly tender from the hills the day before, but excited to see what trails lay ahead of them. Lots of new comers, mainly locals from the valley made an appearance on the Sunday which gave everyone new energy. Day 2 tested runners with another decent climb to kick-off the run. The route then descended the mountains, finishing with a river crossing and a swim to cool off, before heading home to enjoy lamb shawarmas and prizegiving.
All in all, the inaugural Kudu Classic was a huge success and we look forwarding to planning another proudly EC event in 2017.