Underberg – As public entries opened for the Euro Steel Run The Rivers in partnership with FNB trails runs, the organisers stressed that they will strictly enforce the caps on all their events to ensure they are fully compliant with lockdown regulations and to guarantee the quality of each participants experience.

“We have always had a cap on our events, the trail runs and the Euro Steel Drak Descent MTB rides, simply because we want the entire experience to be personal and memorable for each runner and rider,” said Derek Christie of the Sani Spoors organisers. “The Covid-19 regulations have a strict cap on 500 at any one event, which simply reinforces the limit that we had in mind.”

Both the trail run and MTB events form part of the FNB Drak Adventure Weekend and have become popular stops for riders and runners looking to test themselves against the backdrop of the Drakensberg.

The trail run events are run simultaneously from a common start venue, so the number of entries for the Euro Steel Run The Rivers and the shorter Run The Rivers Lite races will be collectively capped at 500 athletes.

Christie pointed out that due to fact that the full 90km MTB ride and the newer 43km Euro Steel MTB Challenge both start at different places, they are independent of each other they will be capped at 500 riders each.

The events were more than 50% subscribed from pre-entries limited to previous participants and the waiting list, and when public entries opened last weekend, the remaining places have started to be snapped up by riders eager to test themselves against the unique network of trails.

With many recreational riders and runners frustrated at the number of popular events cancelled during the lockdown, interest in the MTB rides and trail runs that make up pillars of the FNB Drak Adventure Weekend on 30 and 31 January 2021 is high, and based on the entries and steady flow of questions being fielded at the Sani Spoors office, the cap numbers will be confronted sooner rather than later.

“My advice is simple, if you plan to ride or run these event at the end of January, enter sooner rather than later,” said Christie. “Having weathered the storm with the lockdowns, it would be really frustrating to go online to enter to find that your race of choice race is fully subscribed.”

The MTB and trail events share Underberg with the N3TC Drak Challenge and the FNB Drak Music Experience music concerts on the last weekend in January, and always attracts thousands of athletes and their families to the Southern Drakensberg town.