Cape Town: More than 300 riders who braved the wet, wintry weather for the Christian Motorcyclists Association’s third annual Blanket Run to Fairbridge Mall in Brackenfell yesterday were joined at the end venue by their families, car clubs and members of the public who’d heard about the event and simply pitched up carrying blankets.
Anybody who has experienced a wet, blustery Cape winter knows how miserable it can be for the indigent and the homeless; it’s a bitter, biting cold that is no respecter of persons. Which is why the Blanket Run strikes a chord in the hearts of Cape Town’s bikers; it doesn’t matter who you are or what you ride – if you’re on the roads in winter you’ll get wet and cold.
So, rather than keeping them away, the unpleasant conditions gave the riders even more reason to be there, in club strength and individually, some from as far away as Oudtshoorn, on an astonishing variety of machines from scooters to full-dress tourers, sportsters and musclebikes.
They included a number of cherished showbikes, most of which arrived under their own power despite the wet roads, their owners willing to face the prospect of a major clean-up for this event in particular.
Pastor George Lehman led the mass ride from the Bikers Church in Brackenfell to the end venue; he was amazed to see, even after he’d parked his bike, that there were still riders coming down off the bridge leading to the mall.
Convenor Emil Lawrence had said earlier the target for the 2017 Blanket Run was 3000 blankets and, judging by the response, that target would be comfortably exceeded. Few riders brought just one blanket; most brought several and Adel Esterhuizen was crowned Queen of the Blankets for her contribution of no less than 88.
The blankets were to be distributed, said Lawrence, some on the day and the rest during the following week, to more than two dozen homes, shelters and outreach programmes across the Western Cape.