VIVA LA TEAM RICHELIEU
Take some of Distell’s top talent, mix with water, garnish with some mountain terrain and a stretch of beach and the result is a very impressive athletic team performance in the name of Richelieu, that’s right in keeping with the brand’s status as one of South Africa’s top performing brandies.
The seven member team of super-fit athletes, all representing Richelieu in this year’s Totalsports Challenge at Kleinmond in January made it into the top ten of the 145 team entries.“That shows just how outstanding our guys were, taking tenth position, in the face of some very serious competition,” says Jeremy Thompson, marketing manager for the brand, who unfortunately had to withdraw from the team due to ill health.
Now in its tenth year, the very arduous annual challenge involves a relay of seven sporting activities in which each team member completes his or her task before passing on the baton to the next team member. The challenge required the team to fulfil a surf ski ocean paddle of 12km; a sea swim (1.5km); road biking (50km from Gordon's Bay to Kleinmond); road running (13km); canoe paddling (13km); mountain biking (25km) and a beach run (9km).
Conditions for the event, held on January 14, were absolutely ideal, according to Gary Ross, Distell’ SA’s group events manager, with a light wind coming up towards lunchtime. “We work across disciplines, across departments and across a range of levels in the business. It was a fantastic example of team bonding, all working towards achieving the same goal – excellence and endurance in the name of Richelieu.”
Challenge participants were rewarded with a glorious sunrise, a school of dolphins that accompanied the surf ski paddlers and spectacular scenery. “Everyone agreed that it might have been tremendously taxing, gruelling even, but it was worth every second!”
Team members were surfski ocean paddler, Piet Kruger, who stood in for Jeremy; sea swimmer, Mike Trzebiatowsky (better known as Mike Trez); road cyclist Wayne Roberts; road runner, Carien Helberg; canoe paddler Pierre Rabie; mountain biker, Malcolm Searle; and beach runner, Morné van Greunen.
Gary Ross says there is so much interest in the challenge amongst his colleagues that Richelieu could step up its participation in the 2013 event and he has issued a challenge of his own to aspirant athletes to keep on training!