Joost, J9 to support Cape Epic cyclists

Brendan Snyman and Dirk Kotze will ride the 8-day race to raise R100,000 to help find the cure for MND.

Former Springbok rugby player Joost van der Westhuizen started the J9 Foundation after he was diagnosed with Motor Neuron Disease (MND). Picture: Christa van der Walt/EWN.

CAPE TOWN - Former Springbok rugby player Joost van der Westhuizen is using the upcoming Absa Cape Epic to raise funds and awareness about Motor Neuron Disease (MND).

He started the J9 Foundation after he was diagnosed with MND in 2011.

The eight-day race starts on Sunday.

Brendan Snyman and Dirk Kotze will take on the mountain bike stage race to raise R100,000 to help find a cure for MND.

Joost and J9 Foundation staff will act as the support team for the two riders.

The foundation's David Thorpe says they are hoping to create awareness about MND.

"The campaign is a new one for us, we got asked by two local guys if they could ride for us in the Cape Epic. First we thought they were absolutely crazy, but then we got on board."

Thorpe adds van der Westhuizen has a dream to open a MND centre.

The 718 kilometre race will end on 22 March.