THIRSTI AFRICANX ambassadors set for THREE DAYS of sensational trail running!

THIRSTI AFRICANX ambassadors set for THREE DAYS of sensational trail running!

“Let Nature Give You A Run For Your Money”

THIRSTI AFRICANX TRAILRUN ambassadors, Ashraf Orrie, Nicholas Rupanga, Blake Dyason, Nonhlakanipho Tau and Franza Landman are lacing up for a weekend of sensational trail running when South Africa’s premier 3-Day Stage Race returns to the Houw Hoek Hotel (Western Cape) from Saturday 19 – Monday 21 March 2022 in celebration of its 12th anniversary.

According to Ashraf Orrie (Plumstead, Cape Town) the most important box to tick to ensure that a runner has the best AFRICANX experience possible, is to choose the correct running partner. For Orrie that partner is his wife, Roldah.

“Roldah has been my AFRICANX partner for the past five years. I have no choice, it’s about saving my marriage,” laughs Orrie. “On a serious note, we are equally paced and have podiumed at this event in the Masters’ Category for the last couple of years.  The 2021 event was awesome. We had three great days of running with our AFRICANX family and friends coupled with fantastic meals. Our goal this year is to introduce more friends to the event, while experiencing more laughs and highs. To the first-time entrant, don’t overthink the race. It’s a novice friendly race. Treat it like you’re out exploring, run when you want to run and walk when you want to walk. Eat early and take in enough liquids. Most importantly ensure that you know your partner well before race day. It’s the ultimate team building event.”

A legend in South African trail running circles, Nicholas Rupanga (Kenilworth, Cape Town) is one of two runners (the other being sports journalist Adnaan Mohamed) that has taken part in the THIRSTI AFRICANX TRAILRUN 3-Day Stage Race ten out of the eleven times that it has been hosted. Rupanga is also one of the first winners, in 2009 he and team member Patrick Cox claimed gold in the Men’s Team category of the inaugural event.

“For me the THIRSTI AFRICANX TRAILRUN is about making new friends and socialising,” says Rupanga. “The event is well organized and I always enjoy the vibe. I will once again team up with Wandisile Nongodlwana. We’ve been running together as Veterans for the past three years. Last year I injured my calf on the first day, but thanks to Wandisile, who was sympathetic towards my situation, we still managed to finish all three stages. Wandisile has the endurance while I am fast and strong. Our goal is to be competitive, while making new friends and having fun.”

According to Blake Dyason (Hout Bay, Cape Town), the THIRSTI AFRICANX TRAILRUN always delivers great trails, views and race village vibe. “The 2021 event was really special as it was the first time that many of us saw each other again since lockdown started,” says Dyason. “I loved connecting with the trail community, catching up with friends and making new friends. I also loved the race village and vibe. Each day is beautiful and offers a different view and experience. All the trails are well maintained and runnable. I have a friendly warning to all newcomers though, be prepared to pick up weight. The food at this event is amazing. Don’t forget your funky outfit for Dress Up Day (Stage 3) and enjoy the nerves and excitement of SA’s premier 3-Day Stage Trail Race.”

Nonhlakanipho Tau (Randburg, Gauteng) and Kennedy Sekhuthe are hoping to better their performance at the 2022 THIRSTI AFRICANX TRAILRUN 3-Day Stage Race. “Last year’s event truly was amazing. I even forgot that I had ankle issues during the run,” says Tau. “It felt like a trail festival especially with Day Three being Dress Up Day. The variety in the routes was amazing. We enjoyed a very fast Day 1, some climbing and technical effort on Day 2 (my favourite) and a hot but balanced Day 3. Lunching and dining with trail buddies was just awesome. I also loved the camping experience with hot showers throughout, that really is a rare experience at events. The stocked-up water tables will have you thinking that you are on an eating adventure. My advice is to control your nutrition and know what works for you. One thing is for sure, you won’t go hungry or thirsty (no pun intended) at this event”.

According to Franza Landman (East London), the THIRSTI AFRICANX TRAILRUN 3-Day Stage Race sparked her love for trail running.

“The THIRSTI AFRICANX TRAILRUN is one of the best organized events in South Africa,” says Landman. “The 3-Day Stage Race is the perfect event to share with someone special. Last year I didn’t want the weekend to end. I will once again team up with my boyfriend, Liam. I believe that as a couple it is great to tackle the trails as a team. I’m looking forward to the magical scenery paired with awesome people and the fabulous vibe that you just can’t get enough of. I have one very important ritual before a race, I cannot take part in a race if I don’t have a Beet It Sport shot an hour before the race starts. I also have a shot an hour before each training session the week building up to the race. Beet It Sport is a natural nitrate supplement that naturally boosts sporting performance. I can definitely feel the difference whether training or racing.”



Launched in 2009, the THIRSTI AFRICANX TRAILRUN is synonymous with magnificent trails, spectacular views, mouth-watering food, a relaxed atmosphere, great vibe and most importantly, teamwork! Teams of two trail running enthusiasts (male/female/mixed) will be seen battling it out on a route varying in distances each day.  Each stage will feature a different route that is guaranteed to keep things challenging, yet exciting while leaving runners in awe.

Date Saturday 19 – Monday 21 March 2022
Venue Houw Hoek Hotel (Western Cape)
Event Format 3-Day Stage Trail Run
Entry Format Teams of Two Runners (male / female / mixed)
Stage Distance:


Stage 1: +- 24 km

Stage 2: +- 32 km

Stage 3: +- 18 km

Entry Fees:


OPTION 1R3600 per runner

OPTION 2R4200 per runner

OPTION 3R4600 per runner

Entries Close: Friday 11 March 2022


Entry Fee Includes:

  • First Ascent AFRICANX Garment
  • Finisher Tshirt
  • Finisher Medal
  • THIRSTI Refreshment Zone
  • Well stocked water points and spectacular route Experiences
  • Evening Prize Giving and Entertainment


DRESS UP DAY: One of the many highlights of the THIRSTI AFRICANX TRAILRUN 3-Day Stage Race is “Dress Up Day” which will be celebrated on the third and final stage, on Monday 21 March. The rule is very simple, both runners need to wear their outfits for the duration of the stage, from start to finish. There are awesome sponsor prizes up for grabs as well as bragging rights for a year.


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For additional information on the THIRSTI AFRICANX TRAILRUN 3-Day, 2-Day and/or 1-Day events please visit, contact Stillwater Sports on 082 991 0045 or email [email protected].


More about THIRSTI:

THIRSTI is a uniquely sourced natural spring water that is rich in minerals and sourced from two extraordinary locations. Its primary bottling plant was founded in 2015 at a Normandien farm in the foothills of the Klein Drakensberg mountains. In 2021, THIRSTI expanded operations into the mountain basin of Tulbagh, surrounded by exquisite mountains and drained by the Klein Berg River and its tributaries. Each source has its own state-of-the-art bottling plant where the water is filtered, tested and bottled, ready to be enjoyed by consumers. The THIRSTI product range includes Natural Spring Water, Sparkling Water, Sparkling Flavoured Water and an iconic sports drink, THIRSTI ISOFIT+. The South African brand proudly partners with the Springboks, Absa Cape Epic, Comrades Marathon, Blue Bulls Company, Sharks Rugby, THIRSTI AFRICANX TRAILRUN series of events and the Nedbank Running Club. 

For more information about THIRSTI, please visit