JOHANNESBURG – With the travel portion of the Ranger Odyssey at an end, still to be determined is who will get to go home with their own Ford Ranger.
Ford Ranger Odyssey 2013, a unique Pan African 4x4 challenge, attracted rugged individualists determined to conquer some of Africa’s toughest terrain. Following a four-day boot camp, 10 finalists competed in a three-week long expedition that began in Kenya and culminated in Pretoria July 14. Points awarded throughout the competition are being tabulated, with the grand prize winner to be announced Aug. 8.
The 10 were chosen based on a wide range of aspects, including their team dynamics, proficiency in the 4x4 tasks, technical knowledge and their approach toward social media, which was the primary communication channel throughout the 21-day Ranger Odyssey. One of them will win a Ford Ranger used in the Odyssey.
Each of the participants have their own blog on the website, www.rangerodyssey.com, where they provided a day-by-day account of their adventures. Videos were posted throughout the Odyssey, including a recap two weeks in to the adventure and as the excursion was drawing to a close.
As they prepared for the final leg of the trip, Kugesh Reddy wrote about time spent with the Ford management team. “It was a great opportunity to get an understanding of where this brand is going. Making a bold statement to have the most fuel efficient vehicles in every segment and being on their way to achieving it is certainly impressive and to make an impression on a sceptic like me says something.”
A common theme among many of the participants, including Bernard Hollander, was how quickly the time passed. “Wish the odyssey never had to come to an end. . . . On our way down east to Xai Xai we stopped at the highest point of the district. An incredible view awaited us at the top. We had to do serious 4x4 driving to get to this place, but it was totally worth it.”
The Odyssey took a detour toward the end of the excursion to avoid political clashes in Northern Mozambique. Instead, it entered the south at the Mapai Limpopo River crossing in South Africa. The change added Zambia and Botswana to the route replacing Zimbabwe.
“When you set out on an expedition like this, you know that nothing is guaranteed,” says Ford Marketing Manager of Ford South Africa Gavin Golightly. “Seeing how our contestants handle the unknown and unfamiliar is an important part of the evaluation and so far, we couldn’t have wished for a better group of people.”
For further information on the Ford Ranger Odyssey Africa 2013, photos of the top 10 and footage from boot camp, go to www.rangerodyssey.com and follow @FordSouthAfrica on Twitter using the #RangerOdyssey hashtag. Information is also available on Facebook www.facebook.com/FordSouthAfrica.