23 Feb 2015

Sun-kissed skin, hair blowing back, challenging bumps and gathering speed– common ingredients to a perfect Boating World day out at sea. But this time – the only water in sight was around the next corner!

Typically conquering the unknown, Boating World recently sponsored an event of a different kind – but all in the interests of charity – not surprising considering their generous support for those in need.

Visitors to the Cape Town International Boat Show in recent years would have met Boating World team representative Charles Moody – at their on-water exhibit of luxurious Cruisers and Sportfishers.

Not only is he an enthusiastic and familiar face but this capable skipper has also delivered several craft for clients up both the East and West coasts. (He holds a Full Offshore Skippers Licence – up to 200-tons).

When he’s not out at sea negotiating all sorts of conditions while getting boats safely to their permanent moorings, Charles can be found stretching his legs to capacity – on a bicycle!

Boating World sponsored the latest adventure of this avid mountain bike rider, who recently took part in the famous Lighthouse to Lighthouse Challenge.

He was one of the 250 competitors in this eco-sensitive off-road race (entries are limited) from Danger Point Light House in Gansbaai to Cape Aghullas Light House and back.

The two day race is a huge test of riders’ endurance and the Elite riders take 4 – 4.5 hours to complete the first stage of this fund-raising event - organized by the Lion’s Club. Adventurers can take up to 10 hours to finish.

The route runs through nature reserves and private farm lands and as this was Charles’ first attempt his excitement at the 7am start was mixed with a fair bit of trepidation. He had been warned that this race can be a bit of a beast - to be approached with a degree of respect!

Following as closely as possible along the coast line, the course covers around 22 kilometers of tarred road otherwise riders are on the beach, jeep tracks or dirt roads – all mostly infirm surfaces.

If you have a moment to look around, the scenery is stunning but there are some very hard and long climbs which are not for the faint hearted. Around 40% of the entries dropped out after the first day!!

All credit to the Boating World team (of one!!), Charles did much more than just stick it out and he managed to finish about half way through the field – not bad for a beginner.

His time over the first stage was seven hours – returning in 6 hours 37mins. “I rode predominantly on my own and there was a 16knot headwind on both days just to make life interesting!”

No doubt he will have more challenging races under the belt before the next Cape Town Boat Show.