ELZA THIART-BOTESChardri Monk (24), a graphic designer from East London, Eastern Cape, has travelled thousands of kilometres and completed hundreds of tough off-road races on her quad to win the Africa Southern Off-Road championship. The 2014 International Federation of Motorcycles Africa Southern Off-road championship (SORC) was held over five rounds and Monk had to stand her ground agains competitors of all ages at these events in Zambia, Namibia and Botswana where she competed in the B3 (Quads Overall) and B9 (Quads Ladies) classes.NOT SO EASYMonk also competes in the first Combined Ladies Class championship of the 2014 South African National Off-road Motorcycle and Quad championship.After winning both classes in Zambia and Botswana (third in B9 and fifth in B3 respectively), she has accumulated enough points to ensure both the Overall and Ladies Class titles. After two flights and a four-hour drive to Siavonga in Zambia, Monk and her crew found out that there was absolutely no way of getting her own quad (a Yamaha Raptor 700) to the race venue and she was ‘forced’ to make use of an offer to borrow a standard Honda 300 to tackle the tough event.She then got the borrowed quad stuck on top of a mountain "in the middle of Zambia" and had to walk five kilometres back to the pits!Racing in Africa is not for sissies and at the Namibia event held near Windhoek Monk had to face her fear of descending really steep mountains. That's how the petite young quad rider claimed her victories on her mission to become the ‘African champion’.WIN IN NAMAQUALANDMonk has been racing quads for about five years. She had to fit her participation in the Africa SORC series between competing in the seven rounds of the SA National Off-Road championship as well as work while she has also participated in the six-day Namaqua African Rally in April in which she won the Ladies Quad Class. She is currently second in the National Ladies Off-road Quad Class and third in the Combined Ladies Class Championship (SA National Off-Road Quad championship) for female motorcycle and quad competitors.Monk is active with Motorsport SA's Women in Motorsport and motivates female riders to participate in racing.Next on Monk’s list of races will be the Rysmierbult 200, the final round of the SA National Off-Road championship, on September 27 near Ventersdorp in North-West Province.