ROUGHING IT: The Ranger Odyssey will put man and machine to test across the harsh terrain of Namibia. Image:Quickpic
• 2015 online entries up by 40%
• 29 South African contestants
• 10 more from from sub-Saharan Africa
• Back-seat driver competition
The 2015 Ford Ranger Odyssey has entered its second phase with 40 contestants selected from South Africa and sub-Saharan Africa to attend a four-day Boot Camp in the middle of June.
Thousands of hopeful South African entrants submitted online applications via the Ranger Odyssey website and through dealer events across South Africa in May 2015.
The applicants were scrutinised by a selection committee that chose 29 local contestants for the next phase. Elsewhere in sub-Saharan Africa, in-market selections were done by local dealer groups at the end of May to choose four contestants from Nigeria and two each from Ivory Coast, Angola and Mozambique.
This year there will be a Namibian contestant among the 40 semi-finalists who will attend the Ranger Odyssey Boot Camp in the small town of Prince Albert in the Karoo from June 18-21.
FOUR DAYS OF TRAINING
The contestants will undergo four days of training and be assessed on crucial aspects of off-road driving in the Ford Ranger in preparation for the final event in Namibia (July 23 - August 4).
The judges will also assess physical and mental endurance with a number of special tasks, as well as team interaction, communication and competitiveness.
Brain and brawn will be tested via various tasks that will determine which of the contestants are tough enough to qualify for the Top 20 phase of the competition.
PUSHED TO THEIR LIMITS
The 12-day expedition will travel through the remote areas of northern and north-western Namibia and throughout will be scored each day on a wide variety of aspects, among them off-road driving skill, communication, vehicle and location knowledge and as well as physical and mental endurance.
Daily updates will be featured on the Odyssey website and Ford South Africa's Facebook page so fans, families and friends can follow the action - including the two elimination rounds.
The Odyssey website will include a leader board that will be updated daily. The scores, ranking of the top performers, and the winner will be announced on August 11 at an event in Sandton, Gauteng.
BACK-SEAT DRIVER COMPETITION
Aside from the main Odyssey action at Boot Camp through to the end of the main event in Namibia fans can enter a Back-Seat Driver competition on the Ranger Odyssey website
which will started on April 30 and will run until August 4. Participants must register on the site, interact by viewing the daily blogs, photographs and videos and book a test drive from June 18.
Each interaction scores points and the more times you visit the site the better the chances of winning.
There are 16 prizes, some of which will be awarded every three days based on the highest scores as listed on the Back-Seat Driver leader board, which will be refreshed after each three-day period.
Entrants can only win one of the interim prizes, which include Oakley sunglasses, a Garmin Virb Elite Action Camera and 11 Garmin Nüvi GPS units.
All entrants will qualify to win the main prize - a Garmin Montana GPS unit worth R9500. It will go to the person who scores the most points over the entire competition period.
NAMIBIA AWAITS: The Ranger Odyssey contestants will battle the difficult conditions in remote parts of north and north-west Namibia. This image was taken during the 2014 event. Image: Quickpic
Full list of Boot Camp contestants
Liane van Dyk
Velapi Monica Nkosna
Yasmiena Sallie Joyce
Dannyboy Nyiko Mlambo
Moroa Quottara Taoua
Ismail Samba Diara
Dino De Lemos Ribeiro
Giftson Ugochukwu Onuiri