What good are wings without the courage to fly? Atticus
Meet Leander Pienaar. The trailblazing, off-road racing entrepreneur behind the rip-roaring outdoor powersport dealership Jetsport. He’s talented, passionate and charming to boot.
A buccaneer of note with a very impressive adrenaline infused CV:
- Started his racing career straight after school, participating in the South African Off-road Championship.
- Represented the South African Bombardier team in the Baja 1000 desert race in Mexico.
- Won the 800km Roof of Africa Cross Country Motorcycle race – twice!
- Raced with the Australasian safari champ, Dave Mcshane, in the SA Cross Country series for team Fox Porter (in a crazy 600hp off-road race car doing up to 190km/h racing on jeep tracks in the veld)
- Completed the 500-km Expedition Africa mountain biking, trekking, kayaking, rope work and orienteering adventure race.
- Ran the grueling 100km Skyrun mountain race two times and will be running the race for a third time again this November.
He has a kind heart, fierce mind, and a truly brave spirit.
Meet the Maverick that is Leander Pienaar – the Outdoor Smartguy.
Profession / Life’s work:
Owner of Jetsport, Freelance spinning instructor.
Only those who will risk going too far can possibly find out how far one can go – T. S. Eliot
So, what’s your story?
Where were you born?
Where did you go to school?
HTS Louis Botha, Bloemfontein
What did you study?
I started my business directly after I matriculated in 2001.
What was your childhood dream?
To become a fighter jet pilot or Lucky Luke, but today I am just lucky.
What was your first job?
Delivering newspapers. Taught me how to sprint with a BMX, outsprinting a bull terrier that just woke up requires a bit of talent…LOL
Advice that shaped your career:
Think long term and build healthy sustainable relationships. Also, lead by example.
What gets you out of bed in the morning?
Breakfast – “ek is ‘n honger mens”
What motivates you?
Having goals and setting out to work towards the results I ultimately want to achieve.
How do you spend your down time?
You will find me somewhere near water, jet skiing, slalom, wake surfing, wakeboarding, mountain biking and trail running.
At the coast I like kite surfing, but above all first and foremost spending time with my gorgeous fiancé and family. I absolutely love family time!
What does success look like to you?
It’s like a tree to me. The branches are all the aspects of life, to get all of those branches to carry bright green leaves you have to water all the roots which boils down to balance. There is your healthy tree.
What sets you apart as an influential man in business?
I don’t see myself as influential, but my clients consider me as living proof of the spirit of my trade.
What are the valuable lessons you have learnt in business?
Never assume, never take business for granted. Being so young when I started I quickly learnt that you have to stand your ground and stick to your guns.
What makes a great employer?
Leading an initiative team, giving them enough freedom to express themselves. Also guiding them with a soft hand to stay focused to the vision of the business.
What makes a great entrepreneur?
Vision, the ability to adapt and enthusiasm.
What makes a great adventure sportsman or woman?
This is very much the same approach to what makes a great entrepreneur, but with much more speed. The ability to make split decisions when dealing with the unpredictable and hopefully ensuring a positive outcome.
Give me 3 words that describe you best.
Persistent, courageous and realistic
What are your biggest accomplishments in your career thus far?
- Conquering one of the toughest off road races in South Africa, The Roof of Africa. *Twice a winner!
- Despite no training and lots of tears completing my first attempt at the Skyrun.
- Surviving Expedition Africa. I got asked to join a team two days before the event after one of their teammates had an emergency to attend to. 500 KM in 6 days, canoeing, hiking, mountain biking all in very remote terrain. A very tough but special experience.
I wish I could tell my 22 year old self:
Easy my tiger.
Your hidden talent:
I can bake a mean chocolate cake.
What other adventures and entrepreneurs do you look up to?
No one in specific. I am fortunate to be surrounded by great people each successful in his or her own way. “I call them my friends”
What is one characteristic that you believe every adventurer and entrepreneur should possess?
What advice would you give someone starting their own business?
Be humble, work hard and turn your dreams into reality.
- Colour: You know when the sun sets the colour the sunrays reflect against the clouds (what is that colour?) … but that one LOL, also happens to be my favourite time of day!
- Food: Pastry
- Drink: Bruichladdich Whiskey
- Sport: Tour de France
- Sport persona: Kimi Raikkonen and Peter Sagan
- Entrepreneur: Steve Jobs
- Brand: Sea-doo & Can-Am
- Happy place: Anywhere out there in the mountains or veld or on/in water
- Band: One band? Impossible haha … some CCR always makes for a good mood!
- Car: Mercedes AMG Gelandewagen
- Movie: The Revenant and Legends of the fall
- If you could meet anyone living or dead who would it be and why? I am busy reading a book about Piet Byleveld. He was a detective, rated as one of the three best detectives in the world. Solving 99% of his cases. I think he can tell you some chilling tales about his experiences, but it’s his eye for detail and his persistence that intrigues me the most.
- Quote: Passion is energy – Oprah
- Book or Magazine: Shantaram by David Gregory Roberts
- Online inspiration: hellosmartblog.com 😉
All our dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them – Walt Disney
Concept & Styling:
- Jeani Meyer for Hello Smart Blog
- Leander Pienaar for Jetsport
- FJ Potgieter for Eye Poetry Photography