Chester to ride Cape Epic
Cape Town - Known in his heyday as ‘The Black Pearl’, Chester Williams, 1995 Rugby World Cup winner, rugby coach, and more recently, ‘Invictus’ on-set rugby adviser, will be riding what is known as the world’s largest timed stage race, the Absa Cape Epic, in support of the JAG Foundation.
Chester made his debut for the Springboks in 1993 at age 23. Twenty-seven games in the coveted green and gold and 14 tries later, Williams retired from professional rugby and started coaching shortly thereafter.
Riding his very first Epic, Chester will partner with cycling veteran and Team Absa Manager, Ernst Viljoen. Both a business and family man, Ernst will be riding his fourth Cape Epic, come March 2010.
“Chester and I are from the same neck of the woods in the Winelands and when Breyton Paulse joked that we should ride together, it got me thinking. We are certainly a unique pair and that makes for very exciting sports,” comments Absa Team Manager, Ernst Viljoen.
Riding as early as 04:30 in the morning as well as extended rides on weekends, the duo is committed to finishing strong. Viljoen’s knowledge and experience coupled with Chester’s discipline and agility make them, without a doubt, a team to watch in the 2010 Absa Cape Epic.
“I survived Jonah Lomu and the All Blacks in 1995 and with Ernst’s patience, know-how and expertise, I’m confident that we’ll come out on the other side smiling. With loads of support from friends and family and knowing we are riding for the JAG Foundation, I am eager and inspired to do my very best,” comments Chester Williams.
Though dedicated to their training and preparations, both Williams and Viljoen are firm believers in balance. They encourage fellow riders to go hard in practise, familiarising themselves with the technical aspects of riding but also emphasise rest, recuperation, and downtime with family as top priorities.
When asked about their biggest challenge for this year’s Epic, both Williams and Viljoen replied, “Crossing the finish line on day eight, side by side!”
Chester and Ernst along with other top local celebrities will be donning their helmets at this year’s Absa Cape Epic as JAG AllStars.
Initiated in 2009, the JAG AllStars supporters club invites South Africans to join local sports stars to help inspire and encourage South Africa’s youth through sport.