Elephant charge 2016, Zambia

The dust has settled on another Elephant Charge 2016 in Zambia. And what a spectacular one it was! Held on the weekend of 1st October 2016, this year’s teams raised $63,433 for ‘causes that support conservation through education in Zambia’.

With the threat to our country’s wildlife unrelenting, this money will provide valuable assistance to organisations on the conservation front line as well as those teaching the next generation about the importance of preserving Zambia’s natural heritage.

In total 18 teams took part in this year's Elephant Charge, but only seven of the starters completed all 10 checkpoints in the allocated time. This particularly challenging course was set amid the rolling hills that straddle the Chongwe River, with plenty of steep inclines, rocks and, of course, water. Tough, but, by all accounts, enjoyable.

Autoworld team wins

The “A” team (Autoworld team) was at its best! Being one of the first teams in the race to tackle the 'gauntlet' was the greatest challenge for us as a team! And winning it to get first prize, made our day!

We moved on from the gauntlet to win the tsetse line which is a challenging part of the course where the team that can drive in the shortest and straightest line wins it! This was a “straight forward” win!

After the day of excitement was almost coming to an end, it was also the end for the “A” team when our front left wheel literally dropped off the vehicle! Snapped ball joint.

With all the beating and banging on the vehicle through the day the excitement was too much for the ball joint to hold! As a team we used some bush skills and tied the ball joint to the vehicle using some ratchets we had on the vehicle. However, with the rough terrain, just over a kilometre from where we made the quick-fix the rope snapped and made it a sad and final ending! The team was down and sad as we felt we were doing our very best and had enough time to have completed the last check point.

It was not until the prize giving that the team came to life again when we heard of the good results! We came 2nd for highest sponsorship raised with USD10,785.00. After all, the sponsorship money raised is what the event is all about! Without the funding we raise, the conservation projects are unable to function. This was a great success as a team and company, Autoworld is always proud to be a supporter of wildlife conservation in Zambia. We believe every effort counts.

It was then confirmed that Autoworld was 1st place in the gauntlet, the most challenging part of the race! This made our day! There was a great shout from the team and broken ball joints were all forgotten about! To just add to all the hype the announcement of the tsetse line was also it! The A team gave a big shout, with all the little supporters (kids) joining in the fun. This closed a great, challenging and most of all successful day!

The champions of the race were each and every team that showed up and pledged towards the conservation projects that Elephant Charge is supporting. The heroes of the race are the organisers who have taken the initiative to organise such an event for so many years in Zambia.

If you want to see more of the action from Elephant Charge 2016, have a look at their Facebook page, updated regularly with pictures and videos, and also the website.

Elephant charge 2016 results

Town car category winner

  • Timo

Country Choice Trophy (shortest net distance)
The shortest net distance is worked out by deducting km for money raised off the total distance. Only teams that finish qualify.

  • 1st, The Carnivores, with minus 18.995km
  • 2nd, Almost there, with minus 77km
  • 3rd, Mudhogs, with minus 13.22m

Khal Amazi Trophy (shortest distance on a Tsetse Line)

  • 1st, Autoworld, with 3.417 km
  • 2nd, Mudhogs, with 4.427 km

Sanctuary Trophy (shortest distance on a Tsetse Line)

  • 1st, Team Chipolopolo, with 2.997km
  • 2nd, The Camel, with 3.027km

Shortest Distance on the Gauntlet

  • 1st, Autoworld, 515m
  • 2nd, Kahl Amazi, with 576m
  • 3rd, The Camel, with 608m

Properly Shafted Trophy (courtesy of Autoworld)

  • Bushtracks, drowned their car in the river

Spirit of the charge

  • Leopards Hill Memorial Park

Castle-Fleming Trophy (shortest distance)

  • 1st, Sausage Tree, with 2.4186km
  • 2nd, Mudhogs, with 2.4837km
  • 3rd, The Camel, with 26.301km

Sausage Tree Trophy (most money raised for conservation)

  • 1st, Kahl Amazi, K108,822
  • 2nd, Autoworld, K107,850
  • 3rd, The Carnivores, K100,000

Autoworld / TJM treasure hunt trophy

  • Sausage Tree, 9500Lb electric winch* 

Autoworld TJM treasure hunt

This year’s winners of the Autoworld / TJM treasure hunt trophy went to Sausage Tree who won a 9500Lb electric winch! This trophy is won by the team that manages to check in at all the check points. (At each check point they get a number which is part of the coordinate of where the winch is hidden in the bush.) Well done to Sausage Tree!

Quiz night

A fund-raising quiz night was held on 19th October at Sugarbush Café.

Review night

16th November was Elephant Charge 2016 Review Night at Sugarbush Café. The official video and pictures of this year’s event were premiered and those who came learned a bit more about how the funds are being put to use.

The 2017 Elephant Charge

Incredibly, next year will be Elephant Charge’s 10th anniversary! The event organisers will be pulling out all the stops to mark this milestone. Think of getting involved – either as a returning competitor, helper or spectator, or for the first time. Let’s make 2017 the most successful charge yet.