Day 0 Honda Quest 2021

2021-11-01


For all, though the actual competition only starts this morning, the 14 finalists who made it through bootcamp met at Honda Tygerberg in Cape Town early yesterday on an uncharacteristically cold and blustery Monday morning. The competition starts in the iconic and remote deserts of the Northern Cape. What better way to introduce and transport themselves to this world, than to cruise north to the start line a cool 560km away on their CRF 1100l Quest Edition Honda Africa Twins? South Africa is blessed with some epic Adventure Riding country that the bike was made to comfortably shrink the distances between.

Adventures and the unexpected often go hand in hand and the weather played its part in providing for this; The weather was foul with a biting sidewind and intermittent driving rain almost the entire way. This weather is very much standard fare for the Cape of Storms in winter, and though not unusual, not so expected in high summer. Lost in their thoughts of what’s to come and with much anticipation, there was much time to bond in collective solitude with their new steeds. The big twins effortlessly and safely bringing the 14 up to the gateway town that lays before the Desert Mountains of the Richtersveld.

With many soaked through having expected the searing heat of the deserts, yet in fine spirits, a hot shower soon had them all gathered for the Team Reveal. Great care has been taken to pair Honda Quest team mates so that they complement each other and afford them the best possible chance of being very competitive. This year’s pairs are particularly strong.

This is a fine group of adventures, crew and contestants alike. They should prove to have some excellent stories to tell when we emerge tomorrow. Technology has yet to penetrate this remote world, we will be out of contact with the world till tomorrow evening.

Today will be the teams’ first taste of the Richtersveld proper. It’s iconic and searingly beautiful, however it remains off limits for many as it’s intimidating and a serious test of riding skills.

Besides getting to grips with this world, the teams will have to bond fast to work together, for this is competition after all. The first of many curveballs, is that navigation will play a key part and it’s back to basics. There are no GPS’s to be used, it’s old school maps, compasses and dead reckoning.

Which teams will rise to the occasion?