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Promoting Namibia at the foot of Matterhorn Mountain

Avatar of inke inke - 13. September 2017 - Sport, Gondwana Collection

Gondwana supports the Namibian Desert Duo in their participation in the Swiss Epic (left to right.): Stephan Harrison, Gaby Raith and Mannfred Goldbeck.

The “Namibian Desert Duo” will be the first Namibian team to participate in the legendary Perskindol Swiss Epic mountain bike event in Switzerland. Gaby Raith (34) and Stephan Harrison (45), together have over 40 years of cycling experience in southern Africa. This will be their first time participating in a European race. “We are really looking forward to this challenge, but we have great respect for the slopes of the Alps,” says Gaby. “That is why we are not riding the full distance, but rather in the two-day race that covers the last two stages from Leukerbad to Zermatt.”

On 15 and 16 September, they have to compete against 75 other teams in their category across 110km and 4800 metres of elevation gain. As a reward, the race ends in Zermatt with the magnificent Matterhorn mountain as its backdrop. The Swiss Epic takes place from 11 to 16 September, along the trails of the Valais Region, one of the best bike resorts in the world. The traditional race format of the Swiss Epic runs across six days. It includes a prologue and five stages (approximately 350km, 12 000 metres of elevation gain).

The two Namibians are taking along a lot of information on their home country. “With our participation in the Swiss Epic, we want to promote Namibia as a cycling destination,” says Stephan. “We have great international races, like the Namib Quest in May or the Desert Dash in December. Maybe we can inspire some of them.”

Gondwana supports the two mountain bikers’ participation in Switzerland and have given them gracious amounts of information material to take along. The lodge group has also gotten involved in cycling enthusiasm. Since 2011 Gondwana’s marketing partner Klein-Aus Vista has offered a three-day mountain bike race along the rough mountain terrain of Aus. Kalahari Anib Lodge in the Kalahari can be conquered with the E-bike. And the Gondwana Collection has entered two teams into the 2017 Desert Dash, the Dust Devils and the Gravel Gliders.

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