Become a Member

Get access to more than 30 brands, premium video, exclusive content, events, mapping, and more.

Already have an account? Sign In

Become a Member

Get access to more than 30 brands, premium video, exclusive content, events, mapping, and more.

Already have an account? Sign In



‘One dark chapter does not a novel make:’ After Sule Kangangi’s death, Team Amani keeps writing history

Construction is underway on the Amani House, which will serve as a training facility and performance center for aspiring East African cyclists.

Heading out the door? Read this article on the new Outside+ app available now on iOS devices for members! Download the app.

The podium ceremony for the men’s race at Vermont Overland last summer was pure elation — John Kariuki and Jordan Schleck, two riders from East Africa’s Team Amani, celebrated a 1-3 finish at the gravel race, capping off a trip to the U.S. that was nearly two years in the making.

The second podium step was empty. Canadian gravel pro Adam Roberge didn’t come to the ceremony, so Kariuki and Schleck giggled and sprayed champagne on each other. The vacant podium step next to Kariuki didn’t mean anything then, but a few hours later something more otherworldly would seem possible.

John Kariuki and Jordan Schleck at the Vermont Overland gravel race in 2022 (Photo: Wahoo)

Read: Remembering professional cyclist Sule Kangangi

During the race, the rider’s teammate, captain, and friend Sule Kangangi crashed and later died from his injuries. The tragedy abbreviated the victory celebration and sent shockwaves through the small and tightly-knit East African cycling community.

Kangangi, who was 33, was one of Kenya’s best-known cyclists. After taking up the sport as a teenager, he overcame insurmountable odds to make his way to the pro ranks. He raced for five years at the UCI continental level before connecting with the Amani Project.

In late 2020, he switched his focus away from the road and toward gravel racing — as well as toward growing a professional East African cycling culture by fighting for more opportunities to race against the world’s best.

Watch: Fursa presented by Wahoo

Although Kangangi’s death leaves a void, “one dark chapter does not a novel make,” says the Amani Project’s founder Mikel Delagrange in a new short film from Wahoo.

The story does not end with Sule’s death. In many ways, our story is just beginning … Sule Kangangi was a lion who led by example and demanded excellence from himself and everyone around him. He set ambitious goals for himself, the team, and the future of cycling in East Africa.”


Construction is underway on perhaps his most ambitious goal of all.

For years, Kangangi imagined a permanent, world-class cycling facility near his home of Eldoret, Kenya. A place where aspiring riders could come for advice, training, and access to the resources he didn’t have until his adulthood. A place that could become known for cultivating the next generation of champions.

Now, the city of Iten, referred to as ‘the home of champions’ because of the many decorated distance runners who live and train there, might become that place for cyclists.

Through its dogged pursuit of equalizing opportunities for East African cyclists, the Amani Project has leveraged its social capital and accumulated resources to begin construction on the Amani House in Iten. The facility will include athlete housing, world-class training facilities, and a VeloSolutions pumptrack — and will serve as a living monument to Kangangi’s dedication and dreams.

“What Sule started we will finish,” Delagrange says. 

And, as construction on the Amani House continues in Kenya, Team Amani will continue its trajectory on the world stage of off-road racing.

The squad plans to send at least seven riders to the U.S. this summer on an ambitious campaign that includes Sea Otter, Gravel Locos, the Rule of Three, and Unbound. Riders from Amani will also compete around the world at events like the Traka in Spain, in addition to their home events, the Migration Gravel Race and Evolution Gravel.

After all, one dark chapter does not a novel make.

To contribute to the Amani House, visit the project’s GoFundMe page.

An American in France

What’s it like to be an American cyclist living in France? Watch to get professional road cyclist Joe Dombrowski’s view.