Night adventure for runners
While it might sound daunting to most to run through a forest in the middle of the night, a group of adventurous trail runners did just that as part of the Buco Adventure Nights trail run on Saturday 18 November.
About 200 runners took their places on the starting line at the Harkerville Forest Lodge just outside Plettenberg Bay at about 19:00 – just as the sun started disappearing on the horizon – to tackle this challenge.
Each runner was equipped with a head torch and a few other safety necessities to assist them along the trail, which included some dirt road sections, singletrack through the forest, a few steep uphills and bridge crossings.
Organiser James Stewart said this was the fourth time the event was hosted and was organised by the Buco Adventure Racing team. “The reason why we decided to host such an event is to give a small window of what it is like out there when we do our races,” Stewart said.
“We create exposure from these events as adventure racing is not really a spectator sport so it’s giving back to all our local supporters as well.”
In the past the event only included a 16km route, but this year organisers introduced an 8km one as well. “We introduced it to open up the experience to more people as the 16km is a bit daunting for some. We also wanted to make sure that all our safety protocols were in place and then hope to grow the event in the future.”
First across the finish line in the 16km was Melikhaya Msizi, who completed the route in 01:17:03. Second was Jacques Mouton in 01:20:45.
The final spot on the podium went to Duncan Rennie with a time of 01:26:06.
The first woman to cross the line was Sarah Hearn in a time of 01:36:49, second was Annemarie Cronje in 01:45:07 and third Jo MacKenzie in 01:50:54.
In the 8km event Roy Fraser-Mackenzie claimed victory with a time of 00:48:00. A second behind him was Martin FraserMackenzie, who was followed a second later by Trent Evans.
The first woman was Tessa Van Schaik in 00:51:43, with Claire Randon right on her heels a second later. Suzaan Groenewald finished third in a time of 00:51:54.
“The venue really worked for us and we believe it would be a great venue for next year’s event.”
A group of trail runners tackled the Buco Adventure Nights trail run on 18 November which involved running through the Harkerville forest outside Plettenberg Bay after sunset.