The 31st edition of the Rhino Charge scheduled for June 1 at an undisclosed location in the untamed wilds of Northern Kenya could be one of the most difficult events to win.
“It’s possible we could end up with a high number of finishers but the teams trying to win will have an extremely tough day. As usual, decision making and teamwork will be key,” the event’s joint secretary Augustus Munywoki said.
Don White, who is the clerk of course and chairman of the Rhino Charge Committee, has a primary role to design the course and the competition.
According to Munywoki plans to host this year’s event have been finalised. So far, 58 participants have registered including Aberdair Devils Team Page, who will once again be competing for pride and glory at this year’s Rhino Charge in their trusty old Land Cruiser. The team awaits to crawl over rocks, trundle through the thicket and hope to emerge intact from the ocean of thorn bushes.
Winner of the Coupe des Dames in 2017, with an overall distance of 151.997kms, the WACUS girls in an unmodified Land Rover SWB will once again be the team to watch. WACUS recently had their first engine overhaul in 15 years.
Car 30 aka Team Falcon 30 has charged continuously for 15 years since 2005 and is somewhat unique in bringing new people from overseas to the team every year. They have hosted 16 nationalities across 28 team members and because of this, they are known as “The Internationals”. This year they will be, riding on a 1985 Range Rover Classic.
A record Sh183 million (US$1.83 million) was raised last year in Rhino Charge with Peter Kinyua, the chairman of Kenya Forest Service, competing in car 23, as the top fundraiser.
The event will serve as a major fundraising activity for the conservation of Kenya’s mountain forests, also known as ‘Water Towers’ for being the main sources of water for the country.
Munywoki, added: “Plans for the eventual fencing of Kakamega forest are moving forward with substantial contributions from Kakamega County (Sh100 million), Vihiga County (Sh30 million) and the conservation charity Rhino Ark (Sh100 million).”
The Rhino Ark, the charitable trust that supports conservation in Kenya, is building lasting benefits for the forest edge communities of the Aberdares, Mount Kenya and Mau Eburu, and now moving to Western Kenya in Kakamega.