Gearing up for Walker Bay Xtreme

The jump challenge at the 2017 Xtreme.

Several Cape Town and Boland athletes, adventure seekers and families that enjoy an active lifestyle, will travel to Hermanus between Friday April 27 and Monday April 30 for the HI-TEC Walkerbay Xtreme (WBX), a four-day adventure sports festival which returns to the Whale Capital for a third time.

Participants will have 14 events from which to choose. In addition to old favourites – the Big 6 Xtreme, triathlon, MTB Criterium, open water swim, surfski and SUP events, as well as the popular swim-run-jump Challenge – the organisers have added a street mile sprint, off-road triathlon, junior triathlon, mountain bike challenge and shorter open water swim to the 2018 event mix.

There is an event for every member of the family, including a junior triathlon and special treasure hunt for the young ones. The street mile offers category prizes for male and female runners younger than 13, runners aged 14 to 18 and runners aged 19 years and older which makes it the perfect event to enter as a family.

An added drawcard to the 2018 Walkerbay Xtreme is the prize money on offer – R100 000 in prizes split across a number of events.

Stellenbosch triathlon coach, Vicky van der Merwe, women’s winner of the Big 6 Xtreme last year, can’t wait to return to Hermanus to defend her title. The Big 6 sees athletes competing in the street mile, 27km MTB Challenge, swim-run-jump challenge, sprint triathlon, open water swim, and a 17km trail run.

“The WBX suits me perfectly as it is a multi-sport event. It offers so much – it is family friendly but still has a competitive edge. I expect that at least 40 to 50 members of my squad will participate in the various events.”

Hylton Gibson, 23, a Stellenbosch University student and Hermanus resident, has been selected as one of five ambassadors for the event. It will be his first time at the WBX and he will compete in the trail run and off-road triathlon.

“Everyone I’ve spoken to went on about how enjoyable the event was and they’ve all entered again. I’m really excited about supporting an event in my hometown.”

Ameen Stemmet from Lansdowne was part of a group of runners, cyclists, swimmers and their families, who spent the long weekend in Hermanus last year. They participated in various events, such as the trail run, swim-run-jump challenge, open water swim, triathlon and treasure hunt.

“We enjoyed the fact that we could get the whole family involved. There was a great vibe in Hermanus and we are looking forward to experiencing it again.”

Amy Wessels, 27, a digital marketing specialist and triathlete from Claremont, entered the WBX as a training event for IRONMAN 70.3 Durban in June.

“It’s also a fun opportunity to get away with a group of fit friends. We love these weekends – the exciting banter during the build-up, the gees, the support, the fun we have during the event itself and the ice-cold beers waiting at the finish line… not to forget all the kudos we’ll get on Strava!”

Jamie-Lee Day, 23, a freelance copywriter and social media content producer from Noordhoek will also compete in the Big 6 Xtreme. “I’ve been competing in trail running races for roughly six years, but when I heard about WBX I didn’t want to just enter another trail run that I knew I could do. I wanted to push myself and prove to myself that I could handle several days of intense activities in a row.

“I absolutely love Hermanus and as a trail runner, the surrounding mountains and landscape drew me to the event.”

She believes anyone who is passionate about the outdoors and getting active will enjoy the HI-TEC Walkerbay Xtreme.

“As the event is over a long weekend, it’s a nice excuse to put aside the laptop and for families to spend quality time together in a beautiful place.”

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