B-Active Events is proud to announce a new addition and a 5th event to the NATIONAL ULTRA Triathlon Series, SA’s only Sprint distance and Ultra distance Ultra Triathlon Series. This new event, set for the 5th to 7th July is something different in that it is a mega-endurance race spread over 3 days, testing all endurance athletes across South Africa”
The ULTRA X is a 3-day multi-stage challenge within the legendary Drakensberg Mountains. This ‘Xtreme multisport challenge will push triathletes to endure some of SA’s toughest winter conditions in the most beautiful area of Southern Africa. The challenge takes athletes on a journey from the highlands of the impressive Freestate province down the 18km long Oliviershoek Pass in the Northern Berg into the heart of a World Heritage site, the Central Drakensberg.
This event is a fully inclusive challenge, where athletes will be presented with 3 days of high endurance racing, 2 nights full board accommodation, loaded goodie bags with race apparel as well as fully equipped water tables and feeding stations along the race routes. Athletes will be looked after at the exclusive and beautiful Champagne Sports Resort. All meals will be provided for athletes and their families at this impressive resort. The event is open to families and the kids, with it being the school holidays. A family or friend seconder is required for the start of day 1 which takes place at Sterkfontein Dam in the Freestate Province. Evening briefings will prepare the athletes to the next day’s challenges, giving them insight into the profiles, challenges and courses that lie ahead, as well as building up comradery and the sharing war stories.
So, what are the challenges….
The ULTRA X will start on Friday the 5th July at the 3rd biggest dam in South Africa, the Sterkfontein Dam, which sits as the highest dam in South Africa, at 1706m above sea level. The crystal-clear waters of Sterkfontein are legendary and well sought after by fishermen and swimmers alike. Our brave athletes will choose between a 2km or 4km swim option, with the 4km swimmers doing 2 laps of the well-marked swim course. The athletes then mount their bikes and leave the Freestate down the formidable and winding Oliviershoek Pass in the Northern Drakensberg and into KwaZulu Natal. The Oliviershoek pass is approx. 18km long and takes athletes from 1815m above sea level down to the farming community of Bergville and Winterton at 1041m above sea level. The route is 105km and finishes at the prestigious Champagne Sports Resort in the Central Berg. One water table will be provided at the 50km, making athletes responsible to prepare themselves properly for the challenge ahead. After the 18km descent from the Freestate, the route ambles along some of the most beautiful yet exposed areas in the Drakensberg. The athletes will wind their way through Bergville and Winterton, past the famous Thokozisa store and on to Champagne sports, where athletes will receive a Hero’s welcome. That evening, athletes will be treated to a legendary dinner, accommodation and stage 2 briefing for their second stage of the ULTRA X challenge.
On Saturday, after a breakfast fit for a king at Champagne Sports, athletes will embark on a 145km cycle route. This challenge will push the athlete’s endurance limits to reach places they haven’t been to before. The Bike route takes the athletes back to the farming town of Bergville, Ladysmith and past Spioenkop Dam, then to Winterton. The athletes then head home, back to the comfort of Champagne Sports Resorts. However, the challenge is not over yet, as the athletes will then set off on a gentle 8km Run around the beautiful and award-winning Champagne Sports Golf course. That evening, athletes will again be treated to a fabulous dinner, accommodation and the final briefing for stage 3 of the ULTRA X challenge.
On Sunday, after much needed breakfast at Champagne Sports, athletes will embark on their 3rd and final stage of the ULTRA X. Day three is arguable the toughest challenge, with athletes taking on a 21km short course, or a 31km trail run. The running routes will be staged on the highly sought after Cathkin Trails, which meanders along mostly single track in the foothills of the majestic Drakensberg mountains. Athletes will be required to carry their own hydration and nutrition, as Aid and feeding stations will be provided every 10km. With the Champagne Sports Resort being situated at 1532m, altitude and the weather will be the biggest challenges to face come the final leg of the ULTRA X competitors. All the Athletes will finish their gruelling run back at Champagne Sports, where in true legendary fashion, champagne will flow to celebrate the athletes conquering this ‘ULTRA X challenge.
The event is exclusively limited to 200 competitors plus families and kids, giving each athlete and their family a personal and intimate connection with this exclusive endurance event.