RACING HARD: Namibian biker Ingo Waldschmidt was fourth in Stage 2 of the Africa Eco Race, an off-road event through three countries. Image: Facebook
JOHANNESBURG, Gauteng - Namibia's biking champion Ingo Waldschmidt finished in fourth in Stage 2 of the Africa Eco Race on Wednesday.
His wife Lisa told a Sapa correspondent on Dec 31: "Ingo ended the second leg of the race fourth among the 30 bikers participating.
“He said is ‘a long, lekker enduro kinda ride'."
Several bikers became lost in a river bed and had to be guided back on course by a helicopter.
The 6337km endurance race started on Tuesday (Dec 31 2014) in Nador, Morocco. It will cross Morocco, Mauritania and Senegal over 12 stages to end in Dakar – almost a repeat of the route used for the original Paris-Dakar rally.
Waldschmidt, 45, is among 29 bikers, 10 truck drivers and about 130 car racers and their teams. He is the only Namibian taking part in the endurance race, part of the Desert Rose racing team from Britain.
On Thursday bikes and cars had to cover 525km from Tagounite to Assa in Morocco, the first section with big sand dunes and bumpy tracks, according to the rally organisers.
The Africa Eco Rally was initiated five years earlier and largely follows the route of the former Paris-Dakar Rally which was moved to South America in 2009 due to security threats.
Waldschmidt participated in the South American Dakar event as the first Namibian in 2009 and finished 52nd in the motorbike category. In 2011 was 38th and in 2013 44th.This is his first Africa Eco Race.