Green Hippos, mountain bikes and mountains!

Team Green Hippo: Robert Izzett, Paul Newman, Guillaume Ducray and Richard Baker.


Green Hippo and DWR Distribution are excited to be sponsors of three industry competitors participating in this years’ Grindrod Bank Berg & Bush, a three-day event covering 210 kilometres. The mountain bike stage race which departs from the top of the Drakensberg escarpment near Harrismith and then drops down into Kwazulu-Natal, kicks off on Tuesday, 9th October 2018.

Guillaume Ducray from AV Unlimited, Richard Baker, a passionate Green Hippo user from LEDVision which forms part of the Gearhouse Group, Paul Newman of Lucidity and DWR’s Robert Izzett are determined to make this a competition to remember! It has to be said, that a certain lighting designer, Joshua Cutts, did ‘the chicken’ but we hope to see him next year!

These boys who love what they do and are leaders in both charisma and technical expertise, all met (excluding young Rob) some 25 years ago, and they are very serious about the cycle challenge at stake. Serious fun, serious humour, and good conversation all on a gorgeous and scenic trail.

Guillaume has been cycling for about two and a half years now. “It’s great getting out there and not thinking about anything else,” he said. “It won’t be easy, but I live close to the countryside, and that’s where I train. Hopefully, I’ve done enough. Our team all get on really well. Joshua was supposed to be here, but he had a show. We now have a pro cyclist with us now, Paul Newman, so he’ll have to be patient with us. Paul is the kind of guy who says; I’ll do a hundred kilometres for fun before work!”

In the past week and a half, Richard has flown thousands of miles and with his brain still on New York time, and waking up at 3 in the mornings, hungry, he admits that training has been on the backburner for the past few months, with work and family taking up most of his time.  “Cycling gets my mind off things, and I try to decompress… I’m not sure about riding with these hooligans! I have done quite a few stage races, but this time, we won’t be racing, just trying to get to the end.”

Commented the racing snake, Paul, “I’m the one who will be taking the videos and pictures of everyone having fun. I’m looking forward to it.  Usually, when we’re racing, we put our heads down, and we don’t smell any roses. This time I’ve actually changed my mindset and I’m going to smell some roses! I’m also going to put some extra stitching in my back pocket so that the guys can hang on… no, I’m being cheeky now!  But I’m looking forward to it. It’s a completely different mindset for me, and I see it as a social thing. Yes, we are all competitors in a way, but we are all part of the same industry, and we are all old mates who go back years and years.” Paul, who is planning to participate in next year’s Epic, will use the Grindrod Bank Berg & Bush as the start of his early base training.

The man who put the Green Hippo team together is Robert. “A great big thanks to Green Hippo who were quick to hop on board and sponsor the riding gear for this competition and also to DWR who have sponsored the riders,” said Rob. “We have chosen cool people, and it should be lots of fun. We were lucky that Paul was willing to step in for Joshua. He is the fittest of all of us by a long mile, and this may be the longest time he has ever been in the saddle for that distance. It’s a tough ride, but it’s a fantastic ride with fantastic people. I think it’s one of the nicest trails. It’s also a great way to introduce Guillaume to stage racing. It’s going to be a goodie.”

Said Duncan Riley of DWR, “I think it’s really special that we can bring a good bunch of people together from different companies, and who are actually competitors. They are the stalwarts in the industry and just enjoy what they do. It’s going to be great, and we look forward to seeing the photos and video clips during the race! It’s going to be a laugh a minute.”