CHENGELO ARE ACS CHAMPIONS
Posted Jan 08, 2012
Winning Team Chimwala: Jay Fisher, Choolwe Lourens, Daniel Parsons & Paddy Fisher.
Chengelo School’s very own adventure-racing teams excelled by taking first and second place at this year’s Adventure Challenge for Schools (ACS). Teams Chimwala (above) and Amaka-Zambia also collected nine trophies between them, including rock climbing, mountain biking, water sports, tribal survival and overall best team Spirit. Chimwala’s gruelling training regime also paid off with an outstanding Grand Challenge first place performance! The event involved 4 days of multi activity adventure racing culminating in the 50 km Grand Challenge race.
Watching the teams at the start was incredibly exciting. We have been committed to driving teams down south for 8 years now, each time in hope of winning the event. Ndubaluba Outdoor Centre trains the teams to race with courage, spirit and excellence. Each year Chengelo’s teams have looked more and more impressive. However, this year Chimwala’s aim was to ‘win in the best spirit possible’. Months of training for both teams were about to be fully unleashed!
They were finally off; careful map work, planning just hours before, was now a reality. The initial 3 stage race to base camp would decide the winners of day 1. After hours of trail-running, paddling and cycling Chengelo’s teams arrived in great form; in first and second place respectively!
Day 2: The ‘kloofing’ day brought on challenges testing nerve and courage! Teams would mountain bike to the top of the ‘kloof’, and drop down into St Georges valley. They entered this awesome steep sided river valley filled with deep cold pools, waterfalls and flowing current. Teams were required to take on 10m high water jumps, underwater dives, abseiling and swimming through currents that left one breathless. For many this was a highlight—an adrenalin team-filled experience in stunning scenery. Back at camp and warming up around the campfire, teams enjoyed a ‘lighter’ side to the challenge in the form of tribal campfire ceremony. Amaka’s spear throwing tactics simply left the judges gaping!
Day 3 involved a series of adventure rotations including rock climbing, technical mountain biking, first aid rescue challenges and orienteering. Another outstanding display of teamwork fitness and skill from our Chengelo teams brought on excitement for the final Grand Challenge event.
Meticulous preparations before the Grand Challenge such as careful route planning, final equipment checks and precise team roles often defines the teams. On the final morning teams raced off on their mountain bikes into the darkness at 3am, head-torches growing smaller as they ventured into the high, and rugged, mist filled hills. This was followed by hiking, a long distance paddle involving towing their bikes on a self-made raft and a final team swim. Both Chengelo teams performed proudly, coming in first and second.
The final prize Giving certainly was a tribute to Chengelo’s teams, as they have become well known in the competition for racing with not only talent, but also in the best attitude possible and even pushing the event to greater heights.
“Filled with moments of pressure, laughter and adventure ACS 2011 was one of the best challenges I have faced in my life. With a caring and spontaneous team we managed to bring the trophy home. I would recommend it to younger students as it is a great challenge and will increase their spirit of adventure.” Choolwe Lourens, Form 5.
“Lots of fun mixed with sweat and tears! It was challenging at times but I had a great team which made everything enjoyable I am looking forward to ACS 2012 in Zambia.” Daniel Parsons, Form 5.
“Personally as captain I felt the race was more challenging as I had more input into the team. It was a thrilling adventure!” Bianca Lourens, Form 5.
A big thank you for all the support from parents and friends!
Ndubaluba Outdoor centre will in fact be hosting the event in 2012. We plan to host the South African teams but also this is a great opportunity for Zambian Schools to participate.
To find out more, or if you are interested in sponsoring or helping in The Adventure Challenge for Schools 2012, then please contact us HERE.
Team Amaka Zambia: Aaron Stemmet, Tiago Graca, Bianca Lourens & Christian Kalila who finished in second place.