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Face to face with daring Iron Lady

12 Oct, 2019 - 00:10 0 Views
Face to face with daring Iron Lady Evonne Mudzingwa

The Herald

Lynn Munjanja

Wielding so much power over the menfolk that surround her, she debunks the notion that it is a men’s world.

Clad in black leather pants, a yellow spaghetti top, black leather jacket and a black head wrap, she exudes confidence.

Next to her is an enormous shiny green Kawasaki Ninja 300 motorbike. At first sight, she gives one the impression that she is an iron lady.

Looking at her, one can feel the energy she embodies with her blazing eyes mirroring her strength, confidence and high self-esteem.

One doesn’t have to look twice to notice that she is one of those strong women, who can do anything without fearing what people will say, or the consequences of the outcome.

Evonne Mudzingwa professionally known as Eve is this “Iron Lady”; daring and fearless, might as well be her other names.

She is a biker; one of the very few black female riders that you can come across in Zimbabwe.

While most women shun the field fearing the stereotyping associated with it, giving the impression that it’s a men’s terrain, Mudzingwa ventured into the bumpy territory because of that.

Daring and bold right?

The 45-year-old Iron Lady is a single mother of two, Ratidzo (23) and Chiedza (19).

The Herald on Saturday Lifestyle caught up with her last weekend at the annual Jacaranda Music Festival held at Hellenic Sports Club, Harare.

She had just finished putting up an artistic display that attracted revellers, diverting their attention from the stage, in turn mesmerising them with her amazing skills.

Mudzingwa rubbished perceptions that women are restricted in some fields that are reserved for men.

“As a woman, I’m motivated by just not being ordinary. I like doing extraordinary stuff, and since there are very few black women who ride, I was motivated to start riding,” she said.

“It is a social thing that I do in my spare time. I ride every Friday, and I absolutely love it. I also belong to two clubs which are the Motorcycle Club and Survivors Motorcycle Club. I have been riding for almost five years now, and I am the only black woman who rides,” she bragged.

Her vision has always been to achieve goals that most women felt unachievable, and not let anything stand in her way.

Asked about the challenges that she has faced so far, she said she had lost a couple of friends, but personally has never encountered any injuries.

“I have lost a couple of friends to bike accidents. My bike has fallen off and scrapped a couple of times, but I haven’t been injured.”

Mudzingwa said she had learnt this skill at a school in South Africa and has her own motorbikes.

“I went to a riding school in South Africa, where I had biking lessons for a week. I continued when I came back.

“I own two bikes at the moment and I intend to get more. I have a Kawasaki Ninja 300 and a Yamaha 750.

“The fastest I ride is 240km/hr on the 750 and 170km/hr on the 300.

“I want to get a tourer and a cruiser,” she said.

When asked how long she had travelled, she revealed that she had toured different cities, and at some point had been out of the country biking with her friends.

“I have ridden from Harare, Bulawayo, Victoria falls, crossing to Zambia; from Zambia to Kariba. That’s the longest course I have gone. “I was riding with my friends and there were four of us.

“We went to a rally in Victoria Falls, and from there we proceeded to Zambia and back via Kariba,” she said.

Asked why she had come to the festival, she revealed that the main organiser was one of their biker friends and they had come to support him.

“We are here because the main organiser is one of our biker friends so we are here for fun and to support our colleague.

“We have already put up a small show and we intend to do more of it when our show is over because some of our colleagues haven’t arrived yet.”

Mudzingwa also revealed that her kids were not supportive of this hobby as they seemed to disapprove of it.

“My children think it is cool, but they will never admit it. They think it’s uncool to do that.

“However, four of my five brothers are also bikers,” she said.

Outside her biking life, Mudzingwa is a fitness instructor. She an internationally certified Lesmills fitness instructor in body combat, body pump and body step.

She is also a certified zumba instructor, but has not practiced in years. She is an avid runner with several marathons under her belt as well as finishers’ medals in Two Oceans 56km and Comrades 90km ultra marathons.

The Iron Lady is a holder of a couple of Spartan Obstacle Races finisher medals and is now taking on her new challenge, triathlon.

“I am also a group fitness trainer. I own my own gyms, which are located in Vainona, Marlborough and Milton Park.

“I like to keep fit and biking makes me look young,” she said

“I also love riding, hiking, travelling, reading, watching sport and participating in extreme sports,” she said

Mudzingwa is also the sole founder of Eve’s Fitness Studios, a predominantly women only fitness studio that now encompasses men.

The studio offers the most varied aerobic classes in Zimbabwe taken by certified instructors. This year she started her clothing line Eve Active Apparel.

As a parting shot, she laughingly said: “In a nutshell, I am a fitness and Adrenaline junkie who is motivated by the fear of being an ordinary Jane Doe. I detest anything ordinary and refuse to conform to societal norms. Life is an adventure and I explore.”

 

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