Brett and David have been Cycle Tour buddies for the last nine years; David has autism and Down syndrome so the pair use their ride to raise funds for people with disabilities.
Cape Town, South Africa (08 March 2023) – David Klinkradt (17), a young man living with Down syndrome and autism from Brackenfell, Cape Town, is gearing up for his ninth Cape Town Cycle Tour alongside his partner, Brett Chilcott (46).
Though David cannot ride a bicycle independently, he takes on the challenge in a buggy attached to Brett’s bicycle each year.
The two have built a beautiful relationship over the years of cycling together, not only benefiting David, who loves to be out on the road but also using events like the Cape Town Cycle Tour to raise funds for a cause close to their hearts; such as Raising Hope South Africa.
David’s older sister started Raising Hope South Africa, an NPO that supports individuals and families living with disabilities through various projects such as food hampers, parents support groups, church ministry programmes, and inclusive sports such as cycling and golf.
David is passionate about making a difference in his community. He began his social advocacy work as part of the Chaeli Campaign’s Ambassadors programme when he was 9 years old in 2015. He remained an ambassador until 2021. He started doing awareness talks with his sister about Down syndrome and autism at age 8 and became actively involved with Raising Hope South Africa when it was founded in 2016. Currently, David also serves as a Durbanville Leo (a branch of Lion’s international).
Since 2014, David and Brett have been cycling together. David relies on Brett to keep him safe and to make sure his needs are met while on the road, so that together they can succeed. From not knowing each other when they started, David’s face lights up at the mention of cycling with Brett, or the opportunity to spend time with him.
“Sport, and in particular cycling have provided some of the best experiences of my life. A bike is one’s first sense of freedom, the ability to move off on an adventure and explore your surroundings. The feeling of the wind in your face as you ‘fly” downhill or the view as you round a corner, these are special and precious things. I decided to ride with David to try and expose and give a young boy the opportunity to experience this for himself. Over the last 10 years I’ve watched David grow, overcome more challenges and obstacles than are fair. We are more than riding partners, we are friends, a team, and he’s changed my life for the better, forever” – says Brett
With this year’s event, David and Brett are aiming to raise at least R20,000 through a crowdfunding campaign on BackaBuddy. These funds will go towards the Hampers of Hope feeding programme run by Raising Hope South Africa, which supports learners at Paarl School in Brackenfell and their families over school holidays with food hampers.
Each hamper costs R450 to put together and provides canned and dried foods to assist families with staple food items. These learners are impacted by cerebral palsy, autism, and other physical disabilities. Should David raise additional funds, these will go towards supporting the Raising Hope Golf Academy.
David and Brett will be taking on the 109km Cape Town Cycle Tour on 12 March 2023, supported by riders, Gavin Rossouw (45) and Steven Burnett (43) along the way who will assist in pushing the duo up the challenging parts of the course such as Smits Winkle, Suikerbossie, and Chapman’s Peak when the going gets tough.
David’s passion for sport and his community is inspiring, and we can’t wait to see him and Brett succeed in the Cape Town Cycle Tour and raise funds for families with disabilities. You can support the buddies here.