Meet The Team

The Experts

Gregg Hughes

Safari Adventure Tour Operator, South Africa

Best Sporting Highlights:

  • Comrades Marathon, Two Oceans Marathon, Majorca Half Iron Man, Namibia 600

Graduate Message:

Train hard and enjoy more

Sporting lowlights

None, love it all

Qualifications/experience

20 years in the Safari & Adventure Guiding Business

Key likes

True wilderness, Africa, interesting, well traveled and like minded people

Phill Steffny

Safari adventure tour guide, Cape Town, South Africa

Best Sporting Highlights:

  • Majorca half ironman, Two Oceans, Namibia 600, and doing 4 marathons, 1 ultra and one trail marathon in one year...

Graduate Message:

HTFU!

Sporting lowlights?

A DNF on my second trail ultra- that really wasn't fun... And injuring my Achilles put me out for a while.

Qualifications and experience

20 years of safari guiding

Key likes

Looking for life's adventures, succeeding at challenges that first seemed impossible, beer and coffee.

John Mayock

Director GO Run For Fun Projects, British

Best Sporting Highlights:

  • 3 x Olympic Games finalist – 1500m/5km (Atlanta 1996, Sydney 2000, Athens 2004)
  • 5 x European medalist at 3,000m (Gold, 2 silver, 2 Bronze)
  • 2 x Commonwealth Games medalist at 1,500m (2 Silver)
  • World Student Games Champion at 5,000m
  • Represented Great Britain 59 times over 20 year period
  • British Record Holder at 2000m

Graduate Message:

What a fantastic opportunity to be part of such a unique challenge. I am delighted to be part of the team that helps you, the graduates, every step of the way to reach the finish line in Namibia.

Rise to the challenges ahead, whether it’s the long run in the dark after work, the strength of the headwind whilst on the bike or the anticipation of completing your first marathon. Think positive, enjoy the training and look forward to the flight to Namibia.

Qualifications

  • Computer Studies Degree & Marketing Diploma (Chartered Institute of Marketing)
  • 10 years as Director of Special Projects at the Great Run Company (Sports Marketing)

Sporting Lowlights

  • Mo Farah breaking four of my British Records…
  • Dropping out of the New York Marathon at 19 miles due to injury. On track to finish in 10th place and complete a 2hr 11 min performance…

Key Likes

Being outside in the countryside cycling and running. Enjoying socialising with friends and family.

Fred Wadsworth

Doctor and performance nutritionist, British

Best Sporting Highlights:

  • Walked to both Poles.
  • Completed Namibia 600 in 2016.
  • In a support role my highlight was getting an ex Olympian to run over 70 miles across Death Valley in 20hrs.

Graduate Message:

This can be done by all of you – no doubt. You need to go at it hard and soon. The training will be harder than the trip. The trip will live with you forever.

Key Likes

Adventure racing and donuts.

Bart De Ceuster

In-Nam ’18 ambassador and Production Engineer, INEOS OXIDE Zwijndrecht, Belgium,

Graduate Message:

I am the production engineer of the HEC plant on the Zwijndrecht site. As a production engineer you are part of a team who manages the daily activities (production, quality, maintenance …) of the unit. My role is doing the daily follow up of the production part which translates itself in maximizing capacity and minimizing the use of utilities, all in a safe way!

Your interests, hobbies (sport and otherwise!), special skills...

I like spending my time with traveling, playing music and sporting. The last years we created the opportunities to explore some amazing countries and we plan to keep doing this in the future! I love to be surrounded in new environments, absorb and experience other cultures and their habits. At home I practice a few music instruments such as the guitar, drums and saxophone. I used to play rugby, but due to a shoulder injury, I became a passive fan. Although I was not bad in running, since last year I’m totally hooked on endurance sports in general.

What are you most looking forward to about the Namibia trip?

When we were told about the idea, I was thrilled. Although I was already an active person at that time, I had to step up my game. During the training year I used my bike to commute (and I still do) and I focused a lot on running. The hard work payed off because I got my fitness level up like never before! I enjoy feeling fit and I definitely want to keep it this way.
Because you all start from a different fitness starting level, it is logical that you will experience it all differently. However, bear in mind that the main goal is to conquer the challenge as a group and not be the first one on the finish line.
The pre-events are a good taste of what is expected during the real stuff. You are in a fantastic environment and atmosphere pushing yourself to the next level with support from each other. On the other hand, everything is well organized and enough food and water is supplied.
Namibia itself is indescribable and you just have to experience it. There is no walk-in-the-park-day, so every day is about pushing yourself. You will start very early because (1) day light time is limited and (2) it gets hot, really hot... So you want to cover as much ground as possible in the morning. At the end of the day, a well set up camp and diner is waiting for you at a wonderful location. Sleeping under a truly stunning starry sky and seeing some wild animals was the icing of the cake!

Kevin Herndon

26, Process Engineer, Battleground Manufacturing Complex (BMC), LaPorte, TX

Graduate Message:

I hope to achieve something a year ago I would have written off as impossible. I would love to lose weight and be in better shape. My wife has been running with me to train and so I hope through that we are building great habits that will last beyond this challenge.

Brief description of your day-to-day job at INEOS

I am a process engineer over one of our polyethylene units, R691. The line is a bimodal unit, very similar to the Gemini unit that is being built. My duties include assisting operations with reliability and quality challenges that occur. We want rates high and product in spec, and if it isn’t, it is my job to find out why. I implement small capital improvement projects, as well as being the process liaison for large capital projects.

Your interests, hobbies (sport and otherwise!), special skills...

Hunting, fishing, softball, homebrewing beer (I have built a PID controlled electric brewing system in my garage that I am pretty proud of)

What are you most looking forward to about the Namibia trip?

I love to travel but I have never been to the African continent. My wife has been to Namibia and the stories she has told me about her trip serve as an inspiration. I think I am most looking forward to the mountain hike, enjoying the flora and fauna on the way up.

What are you most apprehensive about?

When I first heard of the challenge, my jaw hit the floor at the thought of running a marathon. I am no track star. I have been working hard but my biggest fear is not being able to keep up with some of the more experienced runners. I will definitely be the tortoise to their hare.

Anything else you'd like to share?

This trip is the opportunity of a life time. I just want to thank INEOS and the people helping with this trip for all the hard work they are putting into it. It really is a symbol of how unique INEOS is as a company.

Jennifer Niblo

24, Process Technical Support Engineer, Grangemouth

Graduate Message:

I've always been in to exercising and going to the gym but this challenge is on a totally different level! Pushing myself beyond my comfort zone in such unique surroundings is an amazing opportunity.

My Role

I currently provide technical support to the KG Ethylene Cracker investigating problems, making minor modifications to improve plant performance & maintain process safety. I am also working on the ethane and ethane plus projects to increase KG's ethane cracking capacity and leading a trial to improve operation reliability of environmentally critical equipment.

My Interests

I enjoy socialising and eating out with friends and family and I'm always planning my next holiday to find some warmth and sunshine since we don't get that much in Scotland! I regularly go to fitness classes at the gym varying from weights, yoga, spin and dancing but running is a new venture for me.

What are you most looking forward to about the Nambia trip?

Becoming a fitter & healthier person and of course visiting a part of the world I never thought I'd go to.

What are you most apprehensive about?

Continued running, cycling and hiking on consecutive days is going to be tough and I think that'll be difficult to prepare for. I'm also not an animal lover, I like the idea of seeing the local wildlife but hopefully from a distance!

What do you hope to achieve from the challenge?

To prove to myself that I can complete something I never even contemplated wanting to be able to do

Gerard Hartmann

Personal friend of John Mayock and colleague of Jim Ratcliffe, Hans Crescent, Ireland

Best Sporting Highlights:

  • Gerard has treated 61 Olympic medal winners, 47 World Champions including World Record holders in 100m, 110m hurdles, 1,500m, 1 mile, 3,000m, 3,000m steeplechase, 5,000m, 10,000m, 10 mile road, half marathon, marathon.

Graduate Message:

I am a native of Limerick City, Ireland who, over the past twenty two years, have developed a reputation for treating many of the the world's elite sport stars.