Covid-19 brought life – and most businesses – to an unprecedented standstill.
Shops shuttered, airlines stalled, and the immediate halt of travel and tourism brought the broader hospitality industry to its knees.
Like veritable beachfront cottages in a tsunami, restaurants have been among the first, most cherished, and hardest hit businesses in the pandemic, and notably we have experienced the loss of many jobs; the ripple effect has affected other businesses connected to the hospitality industry and also organisations who relied heavily on the patronage of restaurant-goers.
One of them is StreetSmart South Africa with whom I have been associated for the last 15 years and for which I have raised funds by riding the Absa Cape Epic in 2017 and 2018 as well as Wines2Whales in 2019.
StreetSmart South Africa raises funds for street children’s education, skills training, and family reunification programmes, in partnership with restaurants, accommodation establishments, and wine tasting centres. Eating and donating at a StreetSmart restaurant is a smart and responsible way to help a street child. #EatOutHelpOut in a StreetSmart restaurant can make a difference.
Hence I have committed to ride some races this year and raise much-needed funds for this organisation.
Since March 2021 I have already ridden 5264km split between training and races. My first race was in March where I took part in the "109-for-109 Charity Challenge" which follows the Cape Town Cycle Tour route. In April I rode the Pursuit Challenge #Franschhoek and Pursuit Challenge #Wellington
In May I travelled to Oudtshoorn to race the half version of 36ONE MTB Challenge, 180.5KM starting and finishing in Oudtshoorn.
In July I planned to participate in the Tour De Tuli, starting and finishing at Mapungubwe National Park and traversing into Botswana and Zimbabwe over 4 days of riding, however, the race was postponed to July 2022 and therefore I decided to embark on a mini Western Cape Tour which took me from Wellington to Paternoster for Stage 1, Paternoster to Citrusdal for Stage 2 and Cistrusdal back to Wellington for the last stage clocking a total of 557km in three days.
I also started but unfortunately could not complete the Munga Grit, a smaller version of The Munga MTB, which took place in the Cradle of Humankind at the beginning of October. The race consist of a loop of 525km to be completed in 50 hours; I managed to ride 310km and abandoned the race due to extremely atrocious weather conditions with rain most of the time, flooded roads, hail storms, and lightning making it virtually impossible to ride without damaging your bike!!!!! Out of 115 riders only 64 completed the race.
November will be the time to ride Wine2Whales, "SwitchBack" a well-known and established three days mountain bike race, in its 12th year, from Somerset West to Hermanus; for the first time, the route will be SwitchBack therefore I will ride from Hermanus to Somerset West.
Finally, in December, the big one.............. The Munga MTB labeled as "the toughest mountain bike race on earth; 1150km from Bloemfontein to Wellington with a time limit of 5 days!!!!!
By the time all this is over I would have ridden close to 8000km and although I am very grateful to every donor who has so far donated towards the accumulated R42,000 StreetSmart still needs more.
To donate and make a difference with your contribution is very simple;
Click here and in the appreciation comments write "every km counts" so we can quantify the value of my effort.
A wholeheartedly THANK YOU