DRAKENSBERG, South Africa — Ford Motor Company of Southern Africa (FMCSA) will be the vehicle sponsor for the 2012 Rhodes Trail Run, one of South Africa’s most difficult and renowned trail runs, which will take place on July 14 this year. Ford will sponsor three 4x4 Rangers for the organisers of the annual 52 km which run starts out from the town of Rhodes and then climbs to Lesotho View over the Ben MacDhui snowfields.
The three sponsored Rangers have been used for several run-related undertakings such as setting up the route and doing the recces for the race. They were also used for delivering 400 books to the students of Rhodes Zakhele Public School, where functional literacy was a major challenge to teachers. Rhodes Christian School and Rhodes Public School Zakhele also received beanies delivered in the Rangers.
The Rhodes Trail Run crew who will be driving the All-New Rangers were also treated to a dedicated on-road and 4x4 driving instruction provided by Ford’s innovative Driving Skills for Life driver education programme.
“The Rhodes Trail Run is an extreme sporting event that takes place in the most difficult environments, toughest weather and at exceptionally high altitudes,” explains Rella Bernardes, Communications Manager at Ford Motor Company of Southern Africa. “It’s the perfect fit for the exceptional new Ford Ranger, and Ford’s Go Further philosophy, as the vehicles will be proving their awesome capabilities while conquering mud, rocks and deep snow on this arduous race.”
The exclusive trail run is in its 24th year and is eminent in the running world with 300 participants from all over the world taking part. As part of this initiative, the Ford sponsorship included a “Wild Card entry” draw to the event, which has an eight-year waiting list. The lucky draw was linked to the event’s website www.rhodesrun.za.net.
The draw took place on June 6 at Ford’s Eastern Cape Motors dealership in William Moffett, Port Elizabeth. The wild card winner was picked by Alan Percy, the dealer principal. The ‘Wild Card’ winner was Cecile Balkema from Cape Town, who is very excited to be one of the 300 participants.
Local students receive beanies delivered by the Ranger.