Celebrating the Life and Legacy of Naas Vermaak
Naas Vermaak (12 July 1959 - 2 December 2019)
The Team at Chas Everitt Cape Agulhas have had the enormous privilege of knowing and spending time with Naas Vermaak over the last couple of decades. Naas has been a very good friend and great support and major role player in organising the Cape Agulhas Classic Mountain Bike Race and Trial Run. Naas has given so much of himself every year to make this MTB the best in the Southern Hemisphere! We would like to take this opportunity to pay homage to the Legacy of the True Sportsman Naas, in the upcoming Cape Agulhas Classic MTB, and we implore you to support this as a tribute to Naas, for all the wonderful sporting events he has been part of over his lifetime.
"After growing up in Montague, Naas came to Bredasdorp to raise his family. From there they travelled abroad and throughout South Africa. He changed his career path more than once, and eventually found his happy place - cycling. At 40 he became a competitive cyclist and won numerous competitions in both SA and overseas. It changed his life and he wanted to share it with others. He returned to Bredasdorp, opened a bike shop and started the Southernmost Foundation, a charity running outreach programs for previously disadvantaged kids in the Agulhas area. He taught thousands of kids to cycle and donated hundreds of bikes to help start their cycling journey. He then turned to trail building. He built and managed more than 100 km of beautiful MTB and hiking trails all around Agulhas, and didn’t stop there. He turned to event organizing and arranged some of the most scenic MTB, Trail & Road Running Routes in the Western Cape.
He loved being in the veld, and it showed in the way he could follow the natural curve of a mountain and create paths leading to extraordinary vistas or surprising tight switchbacks. He was a man with a plan and always had multiple ideas in various forms of creation. He loved bringing joy to people’s lives and encouraged them to grow and experience life. He could let loose a quick one-liner and have 500 people rolling on the ground in stitches. If you were ever in a pinch, Naas would lend a hand. He held to his ideals and challenged anyone that didn’t live up to them. Naas demanded greatness and loyalty and gave the same in return. When he passed away the beginning of December, at just 60 years old, it was a comfort to know that he had lived life every minute of every day! Naas is survived by his three children, his dog, and many close friends he made along the way.
Farewell, Naas, we shall miss you." - Susan van Niekerk