Drakensberg Media Release
Written by: Nick Tatham
UTD continues ongoing Ezemvelo influence
Underberg – Runners and adventurers alike will be in the final stages of
their preparation for the upcoming inaugural Ultra-Trail® Drakensberg, but
their influence goes further than just their entry as part of their entry
fee goes directly to Ezemvelo KZN Wildlife.
Organisers of the event are in the process of putting the final touches to
the many trails that the runners will use during the four different events
over the three days from 28-30 April. The signature 100km Ultra-Trail®
Drakensberg, the 62km Giants Cup Uncut, the 30km Sundowner Run and the
two-day 30km Rock Jumper have attracted runners of all different
Race organiser Spurgeon Flemington has been influential in bringing
runners to the Southern Drakensberg for a number of years through the
popular Giants Cup and now UTD; however his events would not be possible
without the support of John Crowson – Conservation Manager for the
Southern section of the Maloti Drakensberg Park.
Crowson’s vision of incorporating events into the park became a reality
when he was approached by Flemington a number of years ago with the
concept of hosting a two-day running event along the 60km hiking trail in
the Southern Drakensberg.
“I was approached by my boss who suggested that we try and set up an event
in the Southern Drakensberg as there was a mountain bike race near Giants
Castle and there was the Mont-Aux-Sources Challenge.
“We contemplated it and then, luckily, I was approached by Spurgeon who
suggested that he wanted to start the Giants Cup.
“This solved our dilemma of trying to get an event started and the dream
or objective was achieved,” Crowson said.
It is known that a percentage of Flemington’s entry fees go towards
Ezemvelo Wildlife and this money is crucial in helping the organisation
with basic running costs during the year.
“All the money that is raised for Ezemvelo goes towards maintenance of the
trails as well as the upkeep of buildings etc.
“These funds are crucial for us in order for us to maintain a pristine
environment for people to enjoy the whole year round.
“Not only do the funds play a huge part in supporting us but the events
are also catalysts in exposing people to the Southern Drakensberg and
hopefully encouraging them to return to the area.
“We can’t say for sure that the events are a direct influence on our
numbers but we do hear a lot about people saying that they will return to
the area after they see it for the first time,” Crowson continued.
Flemington’s passion for the Southern Drakensberg and conservation is
unwavering and this mutual love for the area helped the pair strike up a
positive relationship that has blossomed into a trust between Ezemvelo
Wildlife and Flemington’s events.
“Spurgeon is 110% committed to conservation and the protection of the
environment. He has proven his commitment to conservation by also stating
quite categorically that all funds raised from his events is spent in the
“My trust in Spurgeon is 100% as he would not do anything detrimental to
damage or scar the environment,” Crowson added.
The event has been running a deal with CANSA where the first 50 scholars
registered will receive an entry to the two-day Rock Jumper which normally
costs R1250, by making a R150 donation to CANSA when entering on the race
www.ultratraildrakensberg.com. Entries for this close on Friday, 21
As with all Running Man
Adventures events a significant portion of each entry will be donated to Ezemvelo KZN Wildlife and we are also very pleased to announce that UTD
will be partnering with Wildlife Act (www.wildlifeact.com) and assisting
them to raise funds and awareness.
More information can be found at
Click to download the hi-res
Logo - jpeg
Ezemvelo Wildlife trust will once again be a great beneficiary of the 2017
Ultra-Trail® Drakensberg, like all of the events that Spurgeon Flemington
and his team host when the races take place from 28-30 April.
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