A determined Nasilowski completes his mission

Gideon Nasilowski (35), lives with the congenital condition, Arthrogryposis. Congenital joint contracture, especially in two or more areas of the body are characteristics of the condition. Arthrogryposis means curving of the joints in Greek. Nasilowski participated with about 1 000 cyclists in the iconic 24 hour mountain bike challenge. The challenge spans over grueling six stage of 373 km through the world’s oldest desert.

A determined Nasilowski and his teammates completed the mission and moved physical and psychological boundaries for disabled and also raised money for disabled athletes.
The disabled Nasilowski, on his green-green tricycle “amphimobile” and his team-mates, Cricketer Dickson Vambe, Robert Groenewald and Dave Hammond made it be-fore the cut off time of 15 hours for teams of four at the Nedbank Desert Dash. The Desert Dash is known as the world’s, longest single-stage mountain bike race. The starting point is at Windhoek’s Grove Mall and the race ends at Platz Am Meer in Swakopmund.
Nasilowski said that it was not all the way smooth cycling. They had a few breakdowns along the way. One of the problems occurred on a bad hill when the battery died with his team mates a little bit behind. Nasilowski didn’t want to lose time, got off the trike to change the battery.
“I enjoyed the spectators along the road having a good time cheering us on enjoying cold beer and “braai vleis”. There were times that I wanted to join them, but we were deter-mined to complete our mission to, change perceptions of people with disabilities and let God’s light shine through us.” Nasilowski said.
Nasilowski said when they started to overtake fellow cyclist and the most amazing thing happened, every cyclist was shouting words of encouragement “Go Gideon Go” “well done Gideon” it boosted his spirit and gave him a sense of be-longing and it made him feel part of something amazing.
Nasilowski said “To me I owe my teammates and backup team everything because they stood with me. Crossing the finish line and seeing the crowd erupt into cheers will always be one of my most memorable moments. I just wished I had more energy because as happy as I was so tired I was, I ran on fumes and I just wan-ted to get to a shower first and then into bed.”
“Today I feel so blessed hoping that we could have just inspired one person with a disability if we did this project successfully and if we could have only showed one person how big God’s name is then we have won”, Nasilowski said.
Nasilowski and his team received a hero’s welcome at the finishing line for his courageous effort.
Nasilowski thank Nedbank Namibia for their support Mannie’s Bike Mecca who turned my ‘amphimobile’ into a legal ground road eater.
Konny Looser won for a sixth consecutive time, crossing the finish line early Saturday morning in a time of 14:45:21 with Namibia’s Martin Freyer (15:05:48) second, and Dusty Day of South Africa third (16:34:28). Irene Steyn (17:52:35) won the women’s race, followed by South African Genevieve Weber (18:15:4) and Wilmien Chamberlain (19:12:49) in that order.

The 19 year old Julian Nel from Swakopmund was the youngest rider in a field of 207 entrants in the men’s solo division. He finished in seventh place in a time of 16h57m44s. He was one of the youngest riders to finish in the top 10 in this main edition since the race was introduced 21 years ago.
The rest of the results are as follows:
Mixed two- team:
1. Tristan de Lange and Michelle Vorster – 14:18:22
2. Michael Dreyer and Risa Dreyer – 16:42:49
3. Des Doman and Michelle Doman – 17:20:35
Two-man- team:
1. MarcPritzen and Kai Pritzen – 14:16:46
2. AdriaanMyburgh and Nico Sterk – 15:10:24
3. Jacques van Zyl and Jean Pierre Burger – 15:31:35
Two-woman team:
1. Nicola Fester and Ga-briela Raith – 18:16:55
2. Janine Muller and Mari du Toit – 18:23:33
3. Lauren Davidson and Jana van Backstrom – 20:04:28
Four-man team:
1. Gerhard Mans, Ingram Cuff, Ben Fisch and Christo Swartz – 13:43:38
2. Bergan Jensen, Morne Nell, Piet Swiegers and Hugo Hahn – 14:28:27
3. ClintonHilfiker, Jaco Lamprecht, Fanie Steen-kamp and Andre Ver-meulen – 14:35:15
Four-woman team:
1. Adele de la Rey, Benita Kasch, Elanor Grassow and Lelani Swart – 17:13:06
2. MaikeBochert, An-neke Steenkamp, Robyn-Lee Swarts and Zoe Mitchel – 18:02:33
3. Zaren Knight, Camilla Howard-Browne, Tania Meslem and Jade le Roux – 19:35:35

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