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Sport
Saddle up to raise funds for children’s charities

You can make a difference in the lives of youths while having fun participating in Distance for Difference’s (D4D) THE500.

This bi-annual fundraising event, which takes place at NH The Lord Charles Hotel in Somerset West on Saturday 12 and Sunday 13 October, will test your fitness and perseverance on a bike.

THE500 offers four participating options: the Full Rider (10 x 50 km laps), the Lap Rider (cycle one or more laps of 50 km each), the 24-hour Spinning Team and the 24-hour Solo Spinner.

The outside event starts at the hotel, with the route taking riders through Stellenbosch and Kuils River, and back to the starting point. The night laps are partly off-road at Lourensford Wine Estate. Cyclists will stretch themselves to the limit to cycle 500 km in 24 hours, with short breaks every two hours.

Concurrently running on the hour, there will be 24 spinning classes of 45 minutes each presented by Virgin Active instructors at the hotel. Corporates and social teams are invited to book a bike for only R950 and occupy it for 24 hours.

“THE500 is a fundraising event and we encourage all participants and organisations to help us reach our R1 million fundraising target for this year’s event,” says Stéphan Pieterse, chief people officer of Pragma and founder of D4D. “It is possible to make this a reality; nothing is impossible.”

The NPO aims to create a better future for children by focusing on family life and education. Pieterse says 50% of the funds raised via THE500 will be donated to Patch Helderberg, while the other 50% will go towards various children’s charities supported by D4D.

Over the last 14 years D4D has made a significant contribution to the well-being of children, having raised close to R7 million since its inception and more than R500 000 via each of the three previous THE500 events.

THE500 is unique in that it requires a group of individual cyclists to complete 500 km in only 24 hours. “The group has to complete 10 laps of 50 km each – five day laps and five night laps,” Pieterse says.

“To complete the race in time they need to maintain an average speed of 23 km/h throughout. About 67% of previous entrants managed to complete the event successfully.

“The vibe created by the spinners in the hotel act as a much needed energy boost and encouragement for THE500 cyclists. Join in the fun and help make a substantial difference. You’ll experience a great sense of satisfaction, accomplishment and gratefulness.”

To enter, donate or for details, visit https://d4dsa.co.za/, or call Tacia Roux on 082 415 5595.

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