Gerhardt ThiartHometown: Cheboygan, MI
I was born and raised in South Africa. After graduating from high school I joined the military, the South African Infantry Corps and achieved the rank of First Lieutenant Platoon Commander, serving several tours in Angola. After the military I joined a restaurant group and a few years later, owned my own outlet of the group. I came to the USA in 2010 to learn more and to see the world.
After hearing about dog sledding and Iditarod from a friend, my wife and I joined a kennel in Michigan as handlers competing in several smaller races. In 2020 I worked for an Iditarod racing kennel and have since completed the required (mid-distance) qualifiers.
I struggled for a long time with the Why-why do I want to do the Iditarod? In 2018 I incorporated the GAT Foundation Inc. and the why was answered: to promote, support and bring awareness to the needs of US Veterans.