The Roof of Africa - The Mother of Hard Enduro
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  1. #1
    Senior Member Malkop's Avatar
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    Jun 2011
    Lion's River, South Africa
    Went out for a 50k ride in the mountains last night testing out my '85 XLR. Met a couple of mates at the club last night who spent the weekend riding in Lesotho watching The Roof of Africa. Rod was trying out Craig's Honda XR and decided that four strokes were not up to the job. The results bear this out. Bigger is not better, but optimum power-weight combo is the deciding factor in this game and 300cc two strokes take the cake. Just getting around to the audience points tested my mates and their bikes and they fell several times and were both limping. So put this one down to what not to do with your T-Dub or any bike you care about. Still, from my place using dirt backroads all the way, I can go up Sani pass to Lesotho to the highest pub in Africa in a couple of hours - ok maybe longer on the TW, but on half a tank of fuel on the XLR. I reckon next week would be good. . . .

    Once upon a time in Lesotho... Since 43 years the world´s best Hardenduro riders meet in the Maluti Mountain canyons. That´s where they are challenged by the toughest and most spectacular offroad trails found anywhere on this planet.

    The Roof of Africa begins for around 300 riders in the heart of the capital Maseru. Next come 500 challenging offroad kilometers spread across three respective day stages. Only five per cent in the potent field are bound to cross the finish line. Throughout, the daredevils have to master gnarly single trails winding up to 3,000 meters altitude, nasty river passages and giant stone sections. Rain or shine, at the Roof it´s common to witness exhausted individuals desperately trying to drag their bike towards the chequered flag.

    Saturday 26 November, Lesotho – The British extreme enduro motorcycle rider, Graham Jarvis (Flite Extreme Husaberg) won the 2011 Roof of Africa after beating the three time winner, Chris Birch (Comsol Alfie Cox KTM) on his first attempt at the 44th running of this event in the Mountain Kingdom of Lesotho. The South African, Jade Gutzeit (Proudly Bidvest Yamaha) finished third after he lost the close three day battle with Birch a few hundred metres before the chequered flag.

    Jarvis added the Roof of Africa race victory to his 2011 list that consisted of four (of the five) world extreme enduro races, but admitted that racing for more than seven hours each day for two days made his first Roof of Africa experience quite tough. They competed in the Gold Class where competitors had to tackle routes that included various treacherous mountain passes with a distance of 200 kilometres on both Friday and Saturday.

  2. #2
    Senior Member peruano's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Lower Rio Grande, New Mexico
    I'm impressed. Can I paypal you the funds for a hot toddy, or appropriate cold one at the top when you get there. Cheers. Tom
    Tom - TW200 2002, Kawasaki VN 500 2006

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    Central New Mexico

  3. #3
    Senior Member r80rt's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    I'm jealous, must have been one heck of a ride.
    Only a fool would attempt it, and God help me, I am that fool!

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