Rugby Legend Tackles a Monumental Charity Challenge
Photo Cred: Stefan Terblanche

A tangible buzz of energy fills the air around SA Rugby Legend, Stefan Terblanche, who has just completed the epic and extreme adventure-style race, GODZone, for the very first time.

 

Competing against the worlds best adventure racers, the South African Rugby Legends Association (SARLA) announced its excitement at its legend Terblanche’s success.

Stefan Terblanche, 42, recently completed GODZone 2018 as part of South Africa’s leading extreme adventure racing team, Team Merrell, on 9th March. With over 100 teams competing annually, our Team (Team Merrell or the Merrell Adventure Addicts) has extensive experience competing in the GODZone event and have been repetitively ranked in the Top 10.

GODZone is a world renowned, non-stop, expedition style adventure racing event. Now in its 7th Chapter, GODZone 2018 began on the 1st March and was considered by its competitors as the toughest and most challenging chapter yet.

The Teams tackled, unsupported, a total of 550km of wild and often inaccessible terrain of the southwestern Fiordland corner of New Zealand, in icy cold and wet conditions. The adventure race consisted of a total of 7 legs requiring strenuous walking, hiking, pack rafting, mountain biking and kayaking, all whilst carrying 15-20kg. Each team member has to carry their own pack, which is full of mandatory equipment and nutritional supplies to ensure they are completely self-sufficient and prepared for all variety of disciplines.

This, in combination with being constantly wet and exhausted takes an immense toll on the body.

springbok-rugby-great-stefan-terblanche

Terblanche played 37 tests for our South African Springbok Rugby Team from 1998 -2003, scoring 19 tries, and since retiring has remained a committed sportsman, competing in the Ironman 70.3, the Absa Cape Epic, Sani2Sea and further, climbed Mount Kilimanjaro. This is all in addition to his role as SARLA CEO and his dedication to the VUKA rugby development programme.

“That is, by far, the toughest thing I have ever done, both physically and mentally. I am exhausted but feeling totally exhilarated” said Terblanche, currently recovering before he returns home to his family and no doubt, to a huge crowd of supportive fans. “Even If I take the most challenging activity I have done in my life to date, I would still have to multiply it by fifty times to express just how hard GODZone was!” Terblanche exclaimed. “Just when you think you are through one rough patch, just as the relief that you made it floods through you, the realisation that there’s another, even more difficult challenge ahead, hits home!”

Global GODZone fans and supporters have been following the teams closely, live tracking their progress across terrain that is usually only accessible by helicopter. Supporters also often know the challenge ahead before the teams do and a big part of the joy is the being able to share in the incredibly beautiful views of the landscapes traversed.

The intention for GODZone 2018 was to complete the intense adventure race and whilst exhausted, the team achieved this.

“I met the loveliest, most genuinely kind local people everywhere.” Said Stefan. “And I was reminded repeatedly that you are only as strong as your team, and what a team! I know we made our country proud.”
 
Gavin Varejes, SARLA President, shared his pride at Terblanche’s achievement, saying “The GODZone adventure race is an exceptional test of mental and physical ability. All of us at SARLA followed Stefan and Team Merrell’s progress closely, cheering them on all the way and we are incredibly proud of Stefan’s achievement.”


Sources: GTG / KRUSH
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Brent Lindeque is the founder and editor in charge at Good Things Guy.

Recognised as one of the Mail and Guardian’s Top 200 Young South African’s as well as a Primedia LeadSA Hero, Brent is a change maker, thought leader, radio host, foodie, vlogger, writer and all round good guy.

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