Fancy a three day enduro race in Lesotho?
The 2nd edition of the Kingdom Enduro will be taking place on the 22 to 24 March 2019.
Check out kingdomenduro.com for entries and more information.
Who doesn’t like the sound of three days of challenging enduro racing in some of the most wild landscapes in the world? Based in the tiny independent country of Lesotho, itself nestled within the heart of South Africa, the three day Kingdom Enduro promises to explore the mountains and wilderness that make up this captivating country. Each day promises riders anywhere from three to five long, gravity fed stages. Ride times of between three and sixteen minutes for each stage ensures that this is an event that packs in a massive bang for your buck. And with next year’s event taking place in March, it comes at a perfect time for UK riders to get some well needed sunshine and early season racing under their belts.
The Kingdom Enduro is the brainchild of Réné Damseux, a veteran of the UK downhill and enduro scene. Five years ago Réné journeyed through Lesotho with an old friend Jamie. They immediately fell in love with this unique land saw the vision of what now is Kingdom Enduro.
“It was terrific from the start just riding different terrain going through little villages and see all the smiling and happy people. All I could think about is how can bring all my buddy’s to hang out together in these incredible mountains and spend time looking at the stunning night sky nestled next to a cosy fire -beer in hand”. So that’s when Réné decided to start spending season after season in Lesotho looking for trails to ride.
Then after 3 years of playing in the highlands, Réné made his way to the low lands where if found Christian Schmidt and Darol Howes at the luxury Roma Trading Post, with swimming pools, showers, restaurant and a world-class pump track… The fire started, and dreams came true on the first ever kingdom Enduro in March 2018.
“Riding in Lesotho has a style of its own… one would say it’s kind of raw and natural freestyle riding as you hunt down a mountain path created by years of travel by the local people and their cattle. After years of getting to know these unique trails, we have strung together and tweaked the best into 3 days of the most badass riding in Africa”.
Techy, rocky and super fun. Each stage brings something new at the Kingdom Enduro.
More about Lesotho
The Kingdom of Lesotho is a small but mountainous country entirely surrounded by South Africa. It has a small population of about 2 million people, most of whom live in the mountains in small villages scattered over the mountainside. Although there is a small amount of arable land, most of the Basotho people live from the earth by farming livestock and crops.
Lesotho has a rich culture and the Basotho people have a great sense of pride. King Moshoeshoe I, the founder of the nation united many tribes or clans under one banner, the then Basotholand (now called the Kingdom of Lesotho). King Moshoeshoe is remembered for being an outstanding diplomat who ruled and protected Lesotho from many threats. He had a very welcoming heart and anyone who came to Lesotho was welcomed as one of his own. This welcoming attitude lives on in the people today and as such is a great place to visit.
The terrain around Roma is exceptional. The Maseru district we are in is named that way because of the vast amount of sandstone around (Maseru meaning, many or much sandstone). Easily seen by the huge sandstone slabs around us. Just higher up from the sandstone cliffs that surround us the soil turns red and later black with a basalt rock. In one run you can get some crazy rock garden, flowy clay lined berms and a sandstone single track rock roll. In other words – mountain biking heaven.
What to expect?
Expect 3 solid days of riding with 3 to 5 stages per day in the rural Lesotho Mountains with a vast variety of terrain. Route director Réné Damseaux & his trail building team have prepared some fantastic routes over the past months. There will be 3 to 5 stages per day, ranging from 3 – 16min. Riders are welcome to arrive early and play in the famous #romarena Lesotho’s terrain is rocky, steep, loose and very technical in places. To master the trails, riders require good fitness and solid technical skills. Our basecamp is the homely Roma Trading Post Lodge, just 30 minutes from Moshoeshoe 1 International Airport.