It is tradition for participants of the annual Imana Wild Ride to ‘sound the gong’ at Umngazi as they cross the finish line after four days of ‘soul food riding’ along the Pondoland Wild Coast. This year, as the gong echoes dissipate over the adjacent valleys and ocean, the last team home will bring closure to a very special and unique chapter in the event and the history of the sport of mountain biking.
It is with a heavy heart that the organisers of the Wild Ride announce that the ‘Imana’, as the event has become fondly known as, will race its’ final tide at the June 2023 event.
In what must be something of a record in sports events sponsorship, it is a deal that has spanned twenty-four years; testament to a handshake and commitment that has stood the test of time. The Imana Wild Ride was born in 2000, before any other stage races were around and remains one of the most sought-after boutique cycling adventure events on the calendar.
The common goal between both parties was simple; to make a difference to the communities through which the route passes, along the beautiful wild coast.
Imana Foods are part of the foundations on which this footprint is embedded. Some twenty-five thousand school children have benefitted from further education as a result of the Wild Ride Education Company (WREC) initiatives, that were jointly initiated and spearheaded by Imana Foods and the events’ family of participants.
Imana Foods, we thank you and salute you ! The adage, ‘all good things come to an end’ is certainly true in this first chapter of ‘wild riding’ as ‘the Imana’ draws to a close. Of course, the tide does not stop turning… And so a new chapter begins.
The Wild Ride is a unique event with big heart and a momentum of its own. The families that organise the Wild Ride look forward the scripting the second chapter with an induction of youth and energy and with the possibilities of new partnerships, creating an even bigger difference… to this beautiful region and her people.