Rhino Peak Challenge 2017 - Participants

Elite Runners

TARRYN LOPEZ

Age: 32

Hometown: Tinley Manor, Kzn

Lucky Draw Prize:
TBC

Occupation:

Pilates Instructor

About Me:

I grew up on the coast of kwa Zulu Natal. With my love for the outdoors and too much energy, running was my favorite thing to do from a young age. I ran High School Track and Cross Country at a Provincial level and then went over to the USA to compete at a Collegiate level on a running scholarship. I moved back to SA in 2013 and immediately fell in love with the trails on a back packing hike in the Drakensberg and now spend every chance I get trail running and exploring in the mountains with my other half.

Sporting Bio:

I Competed overseas in the USA for 4 years running Track and Cross Country, winning our Cross Country Conference Championships.
2016 trail race results include wins at Molweni 32km, Ngoje 38km, Umko Trail 8km, and KZN Trail Running Sugar Rush Night Trail 12km, and a second place at Mnweni Marathon 38km
2017 races so far 3rd place Hobbit Trail Race

Reason for taking Challenge:

Every person can make a difference in their own way to protect our beautiful country and its wildlife. Being outdoors is my happy place. There is so much beauty that our nature and wildlife has to offer and for me trail running is one of my favourite ways in which I get to experience and appreciate it all. So when I was asked to support the Rhino Peak Challenge I was super excited to be a part of such a great cause and help spread awareness. Rhino peak trail holds a close place in my heart. We've run it several times and each time has been a different experience from hot temperatures to snowy, icy, windy weather and when we get to the top of the peak above 3000m, it is such an incredible feeling to be as high as the beautiful bearded vultures soaring just above you.

Sponsored by:

Bruce Grant chiropractic

Facebook: @tarryn.lopez

Goal Time: 240 minutes

No. of pledges: 0

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STEVEN ERASMUS

Age: 35

Hometown: Tinley Manor

Lucky Draw Prize:
TBC

Occupation:

Internal Project manager

About Me:

Steven grew up in Joburg but quickly moved down to the North Coast after high school. This is where he found his passion for outdoor activities. Steven comes from a background of adventure racing and got into trail running after a friend asked him to race Mnweni Marathon with him. This was his first Drakensberg mountain experience and since then takes every opportunity he can to spend time in the mountains.

Sporting Bio:

- 2nd Fish River Canyon Ultra (2014)
- 1st Hobbit 100 (2015)
- 1st Mnweni (2013, 2015)
- 3rd Hobbit 100 (2017)
- 1st WarTrail (2017)

Reason for taking Challenge:

I think it's really important to create awareness about the endangered animals that are on the verge of extinction. I took part in this challenge last year and realized what a difference we are able to make. 
Hopefully through fundraising projects like this one, we can save these beautiful animals so that the future generations can appreciate them as much as we do.

Sponsored by:

Salomon, Science of coffee, Cadence Cycle center Ballito and McCarthy Toyota Ballito

Goal Time: 210 minutes

No. of pledges: 0

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Influential People

DEON BRAUN

Age: 50

Hometown: Durban

Lucky Draw Prize:
TRAIL magazine subscription

Occupation:

Magazine publisher (TRAIL)

About Me:

Deon is the founder of TRAIL magazine. He has run and dabbled in other endurance sports since 1982. He runs for relaxation, for the challenge, for re-mapping his boundaries. He also runs to highlight good nutrition and optimal health through a 100% plant-based diet. Apart from publishing about trail running, his interests include nutrition, permaculture, animal rights, renewable energy, filmmaking, and watching documentaries.

Sporting Bio:

- Winner of Himalayan 100 Mile Stage Race (2011, India).
- Winner Otter African Trail Run Veteran Men's category (2015)

Reason for taking Challenge:

I love this planet. It's the only one we have. And we've done an awful job of keeping it habitable. It doesn't need us, but boy, do we need Earth. Frank Fenner (the virologist whose team announced the eradication of smallpox) said in 2010 that we've set in motion forces much greater than what we can control: climate change, human conflict, new diseases, poverty, hunger. I separate myself from this chaos as much as I can, sharing with everyone I meet that there is a better way. Killing and exploiting animals (from the smallest to the largest) is an indictment of our small-mindedness. Protecting rhinos is a high-profile way to start the process. I believe that eventually the human animal will realise that all animals deserve our respect and protection.

Company / Business:

TRAIL magazine

Twitter: @deonbraun

Facebook: @deon.braun

Goal Time: 360 minutes

No. of pledges: 0

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GARY GREEN

Age: 56

Hometown: Winterton

Lucky Draw Prize:
Two OXPECKER entries plus upgraded accommodation

Occupation:

Farmer

About Me:

I am a farmer who lives in Winterton Kzn . I have over the years competed in many types of sports events and thoroughly enjoyed them. I am a family man with a lovely wife and 3 hardworking children who also share the passion for sport. I never give up and I strive for the best in everything that I do. I look forward to this Rhino challenge.

Sporting Bio:

- Freedom Challenge
- BC Bike Race
- Ironman
- Comrades
- Two Oceans

Company / Business:

Oxpecker

Twitter: @MyDadGary

Facebook: @bergandbush

Goal Time: 480 minutes

No. of pledges: 0

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MARCO SPAUMER

Age: 25

Hometown: Cape Town

Lucky Draw Prize:
Spend a day on set at KykNET soapie, Suidooster. Meet the actors and also be an extra in one of the scenes of the day.

Occupation:

Actor

About Me:

I’m an actor on the KykNET soapie, Suidooster. I am also a guest presenter on the lifestyle program, Bravo, on KykNET. I reside in Cape Town, with my twin brother, and I love the beach and every vibrant thing about the Mother City. I enjoy reading, drinking tea, and being outdoors. I’m constantly changing and evolving, I try and follow a very healthy plant based diet/lifestyle – healthy eating is a big priority. I watch a lot of documentaries and spend most of my days listening to podcasts, engaging with people, and enjoying as much solitude as I can.

Sporting Bio:

There aren’t any big ones, only a few fun runs here and there and also training for the 2017 Cape Town Cycle Tour – which unfortunately got canceled due to the wind. I do functional training and fitness twice a week.

Reason for taking Challenge:

Conservation of the earth, and any form of life on our planet, has become extremely important to me over the last few years. I strive to honour and protect every breathing thing on earth and respect our natural wonders. Thus my support for the Rhino Peak challenge comes naturally and confidently – our endangered species need as much awareness as they can get. And I hope to be a part of that. This is a great cause and an amazing challenge that will hopefully start and continue much needed conversation.

Company / Business:

Platinum Hair and Beauty
Green Monday SA (Partner)

Twitter: @MarcoSpaumer

Facebook: @MarcoSpaumer

Goal Time: 480 minutes

No. of pledges: 0

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DEIDRE HERBST

Age: 51

Hometown: Johannesburg

Lucky Draw Prize:
TBC

Occupation:

Environmental Manager

About Me:

As the environmental manager of Eskom, an organization which impacts on the environment, I am passionate about reducing the negative environmental footprint and making a difference in South Africa specifically related to water, biodiversity and clean air. Two key issues which I encourage myself and others to do when taking up the challenge of improving our environment are first to always consider that the earth is our life support system and secondly we need to believe that we can make a difference, believing is a critical ingredient to achieve what we set out to do.

I feel very privileged to be representing the Endangered Wildlife Trust for this challenge.

Sporting Bio:

Completed full ironman in 2016 and 2017
Completed three half ironman events in 2015, 2016 and 2017
Completed several short triathlons, cycle races including 94.7
Completed my first marathon in 2017

Reason for taking Challenge:

This is an awesome opportunity to demonstrate my passion for sustainability, specifically the role of biodiversity and the important role played by vultures in the ecosystem. Eskom has a partnership with EWT which focuses on reducing the impact of power lines on birds.
While I have participated in many sporting events I have not had the opportunity of such an awesome challenge and have not recently spent time in our beautiful Drakensberg mountains. It seems fitting, given my passion for the environment that I am able to complete this challenge, representing the Endangered Wildlife Trust, contributing to the survival of the bearded vulture.

Twitter: @herbstdl

Facebook: @deidre.herbst

Goal Time: 480 minutes

No. of pledges: 0

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JACQUES FLAMAND

Age: 71

Hometown: Himeville

Lucky Draw Prize:
TBC

Occupation:

Wildlife Vet

About Me:

I have a broad experience of African, Middle Eastern and Asian wildlife, having worked as wildlife veterinarian in the Kruger Park and the Natal Parks Board, was Director of 2 wildlife research centres in Saudi Arabia, and was Veterinary Adviser in Chitwan National Park, Nepal.
Wild animal captures, adaptation to captivity, holding, transportation, reintroductions and parasitism of game species, have occupied the bulk of my working life, as have game ranching, small population genetics and wildlife veterinary ecology.
I am currently employed by WWF to run the black rhino range expansion project for Ezemvelo KZN Wildlife.

Sporting Bio:

Kilimanjaro
Annapurna base camp
Umfolozi MTB challenge

Reason for taking Challenge:

For Fun

Goal Time: 480 minutes

No. of pledges: 0

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