Racing for a good cause at Cape Epic

Mar 13, 2020

The Cape Epic is known as one of the worlds’ best mountain bike races and attracts elite mountain bikers from around the globe to compete and test their limits in an epic eight-day, seven-stage event.

Amongst the hundreds of teams, one particular team is raising the bar by dedicating their race to a cause that affects millions of people around the world – hearing loss.

René Haselbacher, 42 years old, a retired professional road bicycle racer from Austria, decided to return to South for the Cape Epic. This year marks his 5th Cape Epic race and he is super excited for his team member, Robbie Hunter, 42 years, also a retired road bicycle racer from South Africa, to join him.

Together this team will ride for MED-EL HEARING IMPLANTS, to create awareness for hearing loss. Their dedication is not one of mere words, but of action! René and Robbie have decided to contribute towards the donation of a MED-EL Cochlear Implant, to a suitable candidate in South Africa.

They will be joining hands with Cape Hearing Implants (CHi), a non-profit company. A surgeon from Cape Hearing Implants will perform this cochlear implant surgery pro-bono.

Together they will be able to give “the gift of hearing”

René and Robbie also have decided to donate two bicycles from BMC, to the value of R160 000 each. One will be auctioned live at the Epic and one bike will be auctioned on E-bay. The proceeds from the auction will also be donated to Cape Hearing Implants, to assist the patient financially with the maintenance and rehabilitation cost after the CI surgery. This brings the total value of their donation to approximately a half a million rand. MED-EL is an Austrian hearing implant manufacturer and the world’s leading developer of hearing implant systems, with more than 200 000 users worldwide, including South Africa.

René is actively part of the hearing loss community in Austria as he has first hand experience with one of his own family members who was deaf and dear to his heart. He wants to make sure that people know that today there is a solution for people who are deaf. René and Robbie have decided to use this platform, the Cape Epic, which is so well organised and an awesome race to give back to the community in South Africa and to the rest of the world.

René want to get the message out to the world: “Anything can happen at any time with your hearing. There is amazing new technology available and there are solutions for people with hearing loss, including the deaf. Living a normal life again, is possible with a cochlear implant.

Robbie is arriving in South Africa on Thursday 12th of March and the team are extremely excited to be able to take part in the Cape Epic this year, especially for such a worthy cause.

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