Dutch expert tackles a mountain

Evert Oostdam, the owner of Dutch wholesaler Pike Master lures and the founder of the PredatorTour competition, is joining fellow ex-marines to raised money for a charity close to his heart.

He will be joining the 13-strong Ventoux Marines, as they call themselves, to walk, run or cycle up Mont Ventoux in France, raising money in the fight against Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS), a progressive nervous system disease which claimed the life of a former marine colleague, Ed van Heeswijk, back in 2018.

Under the motto ‘Together we will kick off ALS’, the team will set out on June 9th to tackle the mountain and Evert is asking his friends in the tackle trade if they would like to support the team’s venture.

One of the organisers, Leon van Leeuwen, explained: “We witnessed Ed’s illness from very close quarters and it has touched each and every one of us enormously. With Ed in mind, I thought how great it would be to climb Mont Ventoux with that group and set up a foundation to raise money for the Tour du ALS.”

As former marines, they have been training hard to get their bodies back in shape for the tough trek to the top of the 1,900-metre-high mountain, which will mean covering a distance of 21km with about 100 bends. Evert added: “We get a lot of support from [local wellness centre] Azzurro, where Ed used to train. The manager, himself a former marine, allows us to use this location, which is of course fantastic.”

Laura, Ed’s eldest daughter, is also part of the team and added: “I already knew most of the team, because they formed an honour guard during my father’s farewell. I’ll be walking in full regalia with army boots, camouflage trousers and a marine’s hat – my father’s, of course!”

With more than 27,500 euros already pledged, Evert and the team are keen to raise the bar higher.

You can donate via: www.tourduals.nl/team/ventouxmarines or e-mail [email protected]

Additional information: Caroline Spaans

Photo(s): Thomas Steenvoorden