Father and son, Andrewe and Wesley Proctor, are riding the ABSA Cape Epic to raise funds for Qhubeka. This will be the pair’s third Cape Epic in a row and the second they’ve chosen to ride for Qhubeka. Now in its 10th year, the Cape Epic has been hailed as the “Tour de France of mountain biking”. If Andrewe and Wesley finish the race, they will become the first father-and-son team to complete three Epics and will achieve membership into the Amabubesi club, reserved for riders who have completed the Epic three times or more.
Andrewe explains that he used to cycle, but had stopped for a period. He was working for SAB in Johannesburg, when he decided to take it up again. At the same time, his son, Wesley, was studying at the University of Stellenbosch and had started to ride.
“Wesley grew up with his mom, and when he started cycling and we decided to do the Epic together, I saw it as a really good opportunity for us to get closer to one another,” says Andrewe. He tried to get an entry to the 2011 race, but had missed the deadline. Thankfully, through speaking to Andrew Mclean (owner of Cycle Lab), he was directed to someone who had been given an ABSA entry through Rotary (the international service organisation).
“The condition of the entry was that we had to raise funds for Rotary, which we did. We formed part of the ABSA team for that race,” says Andrewe.
The following year, Andrewe contacted MTN Chief Marketing Officer, Serame Taukobong, about racing for Qhubeka. “I cheekily sent him an email and said I wanted to get involved. My proposal was that for every cent he put in to our second Epic, I would raise for Qhubeka. He said it was a deal, and then Doug Ryder (Team Principal for Team MTN-Qhubeka) took us into the team. We looked like pros. We stayed with the pro team and wore the team kit and I raised about R300 000. It was awesome.”
He describes himself as one of Qhubeka’s biggest fans. “Qhubeka is awesome,” he says. “It’s such a great concept. It’s a very easy sell, actually, which is how I managed to raise so much money. So this year I said to Serame that I’d like to continue to raise money. Plus, if we finish we’ll be the first team ever to get Amabubesi membership as father and son.”
Last year, the duo finished 130th overall. This year will be their last Epic together. Andrewe is currently 54-years old and Wesley is 24.
Andrewe is now living in Knysna, where he owns a Mugg & Bean restaurant, and he is hoping to somehow get involved with Qhubeka projects and partnerships in the region.
“Wesley and I have become the best of friends over the last three years,” he says. “It’s been a very special journey. We’re proud to be associated with Qhubeka. This year, if we finish, it will mean so many milestones are achieved. I’ve trained harder than for the other two years, but we want to enjoy it, so we’ll take every day as it comes. If we feel good, we’ll push hard.”
If you’d like to help Andrewe and Wesley to raise funds, you can make a donation to the Qhubeka bank account (see details on our Donations Page) with the reference “Andrewe and Wesley”. If you’re riding an event and you’d like to raise funds for Qhubeka, consider riding on us.