Ahead of the event, Pavinee Kaewsai, five-year old recipient of a successful cleft palate operation also wishes the riders well.


Pavinee Kaewsai, 5 years 8 months, had surgery in February 2013 at Sisaket mission, Thailand (Operation Smile Photo – Peter Stuckings)

Operation Smile Thailand
has thanked the 20 riders of the inaugural YAANA Bike Challenge and wished them well for the 226-km fundraiser for the charity.

The three-day corporate challenge takes place 9-11 September in central Vietnam. It will raise thousands of dollars for Operation Smile, which pays for operations for Asian children born with facial deformities such as cleft lip.

A young recipient of such an operation wished the riders a successful fund-raising trip.

“Good luck to all the riders on the YAANA Corporate Bike Challenge,” said Pavinee Kaewsai, aged five, from Sisaket, northeast Thailand. Pavinee received cleft lip surgery from Operation Smile Thailand in February 2013. “Thank you for helping me and so many children smile again. Khob Khun Ka.”

The Board of Operation Smile Thailand wished the riders well too.

“It is with much appreciation and gratitude that I wish all riders of the inaugural YAANA Bike Challenge safe travels and the wind at your backs,” said Therese Beauvais, Board Member of Operation Smile Thailand. “Without your compassion, sacrifice and generosity, we would not be able to carry on with the meaningful work of Operation Smile. Thank you for your participation and kind support.”

Apart from fund raising, the secondary objective of the YAANA Bike Challenge is to bring together progressive corporate managers to have fun and enjoy amazing scenery while they push themselves mentally and physically as they ride from Quy Nhon to Hoi An.

“It is a signature responsible tourism experience and fundraising event designed to be enjoyed by corporate managers who want to do more. They can test their ability on the bike, network in the evenings and give a beautiful new start for children born with cleft palates,” said Adam Platt-Hepworth, CEO of Grasshopper Adventures, the specialist bike tour company that is handling all the cycling logistics for the challenge.

Additional information about the inaugural YAANA Bike Challenge is available here and here.

To date, YAANA Bike Challenge has signed up 20 riders from sponsors that include YAANA Ventures, Grasshopper Adventures, ASEAN Capital, Antipodeans, Sansara, InVision Hospitality, Anantara, Chow Energy, EZ Land, Les Rives Experience, Vietnam Trade Alliance, Khiri Travel, Green Trails, GROUND, EMM Hotel Saigon, Remote Trails, and ScottAsia Communications.

Companies or individuals with an interest in sponsorship are invited to contact the organisers on [email protected]




About YAANA Ventures
YAANA Ventures is an owner, partner and operator of entrepreneurial travel and hospitality ventures in Asia. YAANA distinguishes itself by sharing real experiences that are grounded in the cultural richness of Asia. The company is the champion of the triple bottom-line: it empowers its ventures with the values to nurture the people with whom it works. Visit http://yaana-ventures.com/.

About Grasshopper Adventures
Headquartered in Siem Reap, Cambodia, Grasshopper Adventures has introduced travellers from all walks of life to Asia on a bicycle since 2004. We offer day tours in seven locations throughout Southeast Asia and multi-day tours of between one and two weeks in 15 countries across Asia. We host over 17,000 customers each year and still maintain a personal touch with each rider. Our hope is to introduce thousands more to the pleasures of cycling and Asian travel.