“Given the dire state of the environment and all the challenges facing conservation in South Africa, it is vital that we all do our bit to make a difference,” says Impey, who participated in the 250km road cycling event at the 2012 Olympic Games.

“This is such a fantastic initiative. As someone who spends a lot of time outdoors, I really appreciate the beauty of our country and want to play my part in protecting what we have,” says Roberts who participated in the Women’s Triathlon event at the Games.

As official Ride for Nature ambassadors, Impey and Roberts will help to raise awareness of the initiative. They will also help to raise funds for conservation.

“The Ride for Nature campaign links conservation and cycling which makes sense given that cycling is a sport with low environmental impact as well as a viable form of green transport,” says Impey.

The Panda Peloton as it is known, first appeared at the 2012 Cape Argus Pick n Pay Cycle Tour where over 160 cyclists donned WWF’s trademark black and white cycling jerseys. The Ride for Nature campaign seeks to build on that initial success with the next event being the Momentum 94.7 Cycle Challenge which takes place in Johannesburg on 18 November. Entries for the Cycle Challenge close on 30 September.

In addition to the obvious incentive of making a contribution to conservation, the cyclist who raises the most money ahead of the Momentum 94.7 Cycle Challenge will win the once in a lifetime experience of tracking rhino with WWF rhino experts in Kwa-Zulu Natal.

“The Momentum 94.7 is just the start. The Panda Peloton will also be out in force at the 2013 Cape Argus Pick n Pay Cycle Tour. Cyclists wanting more info can check out WWF’s webite - wwf.org.za,” concludes Roberts.

  • Cyclists can join the Panda Peloton in their personal capacity or through a corporate team.
  • They are then given various tools and tips to fundraise online for conservation by using email and social media to ask friends, family and colleagues to sponsor their race.
  • Cyclists are required to raise a minimum of R1000 which includes a WWF branded K-way cycling shirt and an early start time with the Peloton.
  • To join the Panda Peloton, or for more information, visit www.wwf.org.za/act_now/ridefornature/.
  • To keep informed, like www.facebook.com/WWFPandaPeloton on Facebook and follow @WWFPandaPeloton on Twitter.