The Cows Media Release


11 Sept 2019

Embargo: None

Written by: Dave Macleod

The Cows cyclists takes tough road for CHOC cancer children

Durban - After riding 650km to raise funds for a young girl battling cancer last year, Pieter Oberholtzer is in the middle of a similar ride to further his passion for supporting the CHOC Childhood Cancer Foundation of South Africa.

The Capetonian retiree started Coastal Patrol Elleny last year to help Elleny Engelbrecht, who was diagnosed with leukaemia a few days after her sixth birthday. The mountain bike ride involved riding from Cape Town to George, a journey of 662km that involved 5458m metres of climbing as Oberholtzer and George Hamilton hugged the coastal routes.

Oberholtzer's fundraising to help Engelbrecht's families financial pressures paid dividends, and the youngster has been cleared to go to school after an intensive chemotherapy campaign.

Encouraged by her progress Oberholtzer has decided to continue his cycle journey where his ride ended last year, to add more money to the funds that The Cows raise for CHOC every year.

"The financial burden on the Engelbrecht family is less strenuous and we decided to launch a similar project to assist other children and their families with similar challenges," said Oberholtzer.

"We started our ride in George where we stopped last year, and will be riding to Begha Mouth, east of Port Alfred," he explained.

"The planned route is 666 km over a period of nine days from Saturday 7 September to Sunday the 15th.

"Our team consists of three members, two riders and one person in a support vehicle. We do not have any sponsors and will fund the project ourselves. We will be camping at night to keep the costs as low as possible," said Oberlholtzer.

"The fight against cancer is not an easy road and therefore we also do not take the easy road. We will ride the Seven Passes between George and Knysna, the Grootrivier Pass, the original Boesmansrivier Pass and many more with our mountain bikes," he added.

More information about The Cows can be found at

About The Cows
The Cows were started in 2008 by a group of eight enthusiastic cyclists keen to make a difference and raise funds for the CHOC Childhood Cancer Foundation of South Africa. Cordi van Niekerk was one of the founder members and joined Kerrin and Grant Bain in cycling the 947 Cycle Challenge in memory of their daughter, Jessica, who had recently died from cancer at just 20 months old.

As CHOC had played a significant role in the Bain family's life in the last few weeks of Jessica’s life, specifically with palliative care and emotional support, the decision was to make CHOC the beneficiary of their quest. They decided to don cow suits and succeeded in raising R230 000.

In 2009, the herd gained momentum and grew to 140 energetic cows. Just two years later the herd numbered a staggering 350 cows all riding for a purpose. Armed with the ‘Love Living Life’ slogan and a healthy dose of enthusiasm, the herd has enjoyed much success and acclaim.

Ten later, hundreds of people have participated in events wearing cow suits. The Cows have raised well over R30 million for specific projects implemented by CHOC and The Cows brand is prominent in many sporting events in South Africa. With these funds, CHOC is able to make a difference to the children being treated for cancer throughout South Africa.

One herd; one quest: to make a difference to children with cancer. Love Living Life!

More information can be found at


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Pieter Oberholzer (left) and George Hamilton (right) visit cancer patient Elleny Engelbrecht. "The financial burden on the Engelbrecht family is less strenuous and we decided to launch a similar project to assist other children/families with similar challenges," said Oberholtzer, who is riding from George to Port Alfred to raise money for The Cows and their support of the CHOC Childhood Cancer Foundation of South Africa. Gameplan Media

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