David Findlay, our own intrepid off-road enthusiast, is a key member of the Autoworld Elephant Charge team each year. Here he gives his reflections on this year’s Charge:
The 2017 Elephant Charge took place last weekend Oct 13th-15th. The charge was in a beautiful location along the Lutente River. The Autoworld team did well with fund raising and came out second place with USD17,000! The winning team Khal Amazi raised over USD22,500. In total over USD111,000 was raised which is a great big pat on the back to all the teams!
Unfortunately we gave the car another beating with the rough terrain and the radiator gave in with just two more checkpoints to go! That was game over for us! However on a positive note we won first place in the Gauntlet (for the third time). This is recognised as the most technical challenge of the whole course.
Many thanks to all our sponsors for their great support:
· GUD Filters
· Willard batteries
· Tracks 4 Africa
· Raylite batteries
· Safeline brake pads
We are now back to the drawing board and looking at a new strategy for 2018!
A bit of history
Team Autoworld has entered seven Elephant Charges since 2010, completing the course four times and raising $128,343 for conservation in Zambia.
The team's best leg was the Elephant Charge 2011 when they charged from Tyre King to Verino in 3.18km, 270m or 1.09 times over the straight line distance of 2.91km. They were 1st place out of 17 teams on this leg.
Autoworld have won several trophies over the years:
The Country Choice Trophy for shortest net distance 3 times (2012, 2014, 2015)
The Sausage Tree Trophy for the most money raised for conservation 2 times (2012, 2015)
The Castle Fleming Trophy for the shortest overall distance (2014)
The Bowden Trophy for the shortest distance on the gauntlet 2 times (2014, 2016)
The Sanctuary Trophy for the shortest distance on tsetse line 1 (2016)
More details on the 2017 Elephant Charge
28 entries raised $111,138 for conservation in Zambia. The Spirit of the Charge was won by The Bushpigs for their selfless conduct during and after the charge; the Properly Shafted award was won by Khal Amazi; and the award for the best checkpoint was given to Gospel Central. See the Elephant Charge website for full details.
Last but not least, ZNBC has made a great documentary of this year’s event. Watch out for it on the air over the next few days and weeks.