What you didn’t know about Shane Gouldie and Trail Adventure

Betting on a good life

By Annabelle Latz

So who knew…

Shane Gouldie, the happy-go-lucky wild-haired dude behind the scenes and front of house at the Trail Adventure runs, actually has quite the tale to tell.

The farm boy from Evander, South Eastern Transvaal, was once a detective, who had his own construction business at one stage, he is a guy who has also played and coached a lot of cricket, was CEO for South Africa Netball a decade ago and loves to mountain bike as much as he does trail run.

Back in his detective days, his unpolished demeanor served a purpose.

“Because they’d just think I was a surfer from Durban.”

It was about three years ago when Shane had a bet with a mate that he’d host his own trail run.

“So I organised this little five-kilometer race, the start-finish banner a tiny wee thing with two ropes that my son and daughter held to make it stand up.”

It was held at the Golf Course For Military, El Doraingne, 

In summary, it was mayhem. 

“People got lost, people cheated… it was a complete stuff up and people loved it.”

A fair few people turned up for it, and three weeks later he held one at Waterkloof Golf Course, and 530 people showed up. 

“So I thought to myself, okay I’ll have one of these a month.”

The third one was at Irene Golf Course, where 990 people turned up. It rained, and it was a complete mess.

“Then I realised, jeeez this is like serious stuff.’ 

For his first weekend trail run at Red Barn shortly after, 1500 people turned up, for the 5,10, 20 and 25km options.

“Yusss… the okes loved it,” said Shane with a grin. 

From there, Trail Adventure was born, and the rest is history. 

There are two rules for attending Trail Adventure races; to stay chilled, and enjoy yourself.

Last year Shane counted a total of 98,000 runners at his races, in more than 200 events around Pretoria and Johannesburg, including some stage races. That’s four races a week on average. 

Shane scouting for one of his many Trail runs.

“It’s long hours, 24/7. But it’s not really work, you know what I’m saying. It’s more a passion. It’s a very nice life, I always say it’s better than work.”

High level sport has always been part of Shane’s gig, and his passion for sport began with cricket.

In his younger days, he played cricket for Northern Transvaal colts, and Eastern Transvaal.

He’s coached South African Cricket Under 17 and Northern Transvaal Cricket Under 19 and had his own cricket academy. 

That was then. Today, Shane loves nothing better than seeing the family moments that flourish and evolve at his races. 

“You just want families, that’s the secret… It’s just the people eh, seeing them enjoying themselves. I’ve had so many thank you letters from people over the years.”

Next year will mark a slight change of pace for Shane.

“I’m going to travel the world and cycle, do all the 24 hour mountain biking races, including The Great Divide in the USA mid next year.”

He’s also keen to see if he can spread the Trail Adventure buzz further aboard, by franchising his races.

“I think sport is just so cool man.. As long as I have a passion, I’ll never stop.”