Meet the KapiK1 Team
Our KapiK1 team consists of world-class explorers and adventurers who are eager to share their passion for the outdoors with you. With no stone unturned, KapiK1 includes highly skilled guides, coaches, trainers, and nutrition experts to ensure you are well prepared for the adventure of a lifetime. Our team doesn't end there. On the ground, we also have local experts and friends from the regions we visit. Collectively, our team has completed many "world first" crossings, and travelled extensively to the furthest reaches of the planet. From the driest and hottest deserts on earth, to the most inhospitable Arctic extremes, our team has been there. Every KapiK1 expedition is inspired from the experiences and expeditions of our team.
We look forward to dreaming of adventures together in the future.
Ray Zahab - KapiK1 Co-Founder and Guide
Ray Zahab is a Canadian Adventurer, ultra distance runner and Founder of non-profit impossible2Possible. A recent recipient of the Meritorious Service Cross of Canada, Ray is an Explorer in Residence of the Royal Canadian Geographic Society, and Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society. In 2015 Canadian Geographic recognized Ray as one of Canada’s Top Explorers. He has ran 17,000+km across the world’s deserts, and unsupported expeditions in some of the coldest places on the planet.
After completing a 111 day, 7500km run across the Sahara Desert in 2007, Ray decided to leverage his future adventures to support impossible2Possible (i2P), an organization he founded that inspires and educates youth through adventure learning, inclusion and participation in expeditions, using virtual technology. National Geographic tracked the Sahara expedition by web, as well as the documentary film "Running The Sahara", was produced by Matt Damon, in an effort to raise awareness for the drinking water crisis in North Africa.
Ray is founder of adventure based guiding organization, KapiK1 and is passionate about sharing his experience and lessons learned on adventures all over the globe.
Bob Cox - KapiK1 Co-Founder and Guide
In 2008, Bob and Ray co-founded impossible2Possible, a non-profit delivering life-changing, educational programming to students all over the world. As executive director he leads all aspects of business enrichment, marketing and social media strategies, sponsor/partner recruitment & retention, program development, merchandise production/sales, and strategic growth. He plans and executes multi-faceted educational projects, leading teams of 20-30 people to some of the most remote places on the planet.
Over the last 10 years Bob has acted as Ray Zahab’s logistical leader for world class expeditions spanning the globe. The duo have worked together on multiple expeditions in areas such as; the South Pole, the Arctic, Lake Baikal, the Atacama, The Gobi, The Namib, and Death Valley Deserts. They have also crossed South America and more. Along with logistics, Bob has over a decade of experience creating and implementing successful sponsorship/marketing campaigns with Fortune 500, mid-size, and grassroots partners such as; Transamerica Financial, Apple, Gatorade, Canada Goose, Oakley, Rogers Communications, The North Face, Osprey, Nathan, Iridium, Air Canada, digigone, Aeroplan, Tribe Medical Group, INOV8, and more. In 2006 he earned a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Political Science with an emphasis on Public Policy from California State University, Northridge.
Stefano Gregoretti - KapiK1 Co-Founder and Guide
Stefano has been passionate about endurance sports since he was a child, growing up playing in the Italian Alps. An accomplished climber, endurance athlete and skier, Stefano developed an early passion for ski mountaineering in the Dolomites. Since those early days, Stefano has gone on to complete multiple Iron Man competitions in Europe and the United States, and top finishes in ultramarathons all over the world.
Stefano founded the European branch of non-profit impossible2Possible in 2012, and has guided many Italian i2P Youth Ambassadors on learning based adventures of their own.
In 2014, Stefano completed a winter crossing of Baffin Island with Ray Zahab, and since that expedition, they have completed multiple projects together, including - 1,000km run across the Patagonian Desert, an unsupported fat bike across the Arctic Ocean and Baffin in winter, 1,850km run from south to north across Namibia, in summer, and multiple other Arctic projects.
nicole macdonald - KapiK1 marketing and outreach
Running has been one of Nicole's all time favourite activities since she was a child. Being the youngest of 5 kids, home life was a busy place. Running was an opportunity to enjoy some alone time by exploring the outdoors and enduring natures beauty. With a love for keeping active she also enjoys swimming, biking and teaches yoga.
Nicole loves to travel and continues to dream about sleeping under those Atacama stars one day. She has been a repeat volunteer for 3beavers Racing and in 2019 the Grand2Grand Ultra.
With a background in Marketing, Nicole has been an active member of the team developing and maintaining the KapiK1 store, upkeep of social sites and graphic design. She is also on the advisory team for impossible2Possible.
Neale Chisnall - KapiK1 CLient services
Born and raised in New Zealand, Neale was always a keen runner in a family of athletes. His running life was rekindled in Canada when training for what was intended to be his one and only marathon in 2010 at the age of 46. Many marathons later he achieved his dream and qualified for and ran the Boston marathon in 2017.
Without being able to swim, his wife signed him up for a half ironman in 2014, as an event that they could do together. The following year he did his one and only Ironman at Mt. Tremblant.
Ray started coaching Neale in late 2015, and with that his transition from the road to the trails began, with his first ultra being at Bromont. After volunteering for the first 2 years at the Bad Beaver Ultra, he did this 3 day staged race in 2018. He was also a participant in the first KapiK1 expedition, which was to the Atacama desert in 2019.
Neale is the finance guy for KapiK1 and is also on the board of impossible2Possible.
Valérie Gagne - KapiK1 Guide
Valérie has been an athlete all her life, competing in cross-country skiing and rowing internationally. Valérie has guided expeditions in the Canadian Rockies, running tours in the Sierra Norte mountains of Mexico, canoe and hiking expeditions in the Quebec wilderness and cross-country skiing expeditions in the Arctic for various non-profits organizations, and for renowned adventure companies including National Geographic.
Valérie graduated from the University of Montreal as a Physical Education and Health teacher in 2017. She has since turned her eyes to the skies in search of a new challenge as an air traffic controller and ensures the safe, orderly and expeditious flow of traffic at the Quebec City airport.
Valérie was an i2P Youth Ambassador on the 2014 impossible2Possible Atacama expedition and experienced first hand how mental toughness, resiliency and team work are key ingredients in defying personal limitations. After this life changing experience, Valérie has gone on to compete in many ultramarathons including the Mauna2Mauna stage race in Hawaii.
Hanna Elkington - KapiK1 Marketing and Outreach Support
Born in South Africa Hannah Elkington has always possessed a keen sense of adventure and a passion for the outdoors. In 2012 Hannah was an Impossible2Possible (I2P) Youth Ambassador for Expedition Botswana. After the expedition she remained actively involved with I2P and in 2014 travelled to Peru as a part of the expedition logistics and media team. In 2015 Hannah again joined the team for I2P Expedition Greece, taking on a logistics and mentorship role.
Hannah’s passion for pushing limits and building her personal capacity led her to a career in policing where currently serves as a frontline police constable. Hannah is also a member of the Public Safety Unit which specializes in search and rescue and public order related incidents.
When time allows she returns to Africa where she enjoys activities such as camping, surfing, and hiking . In 2019 Hannah spent two weeks in Subsaharan Africa working with K9 Anti-Poaching Units assisting them with training and conservation related activities.
Finding inspiration for her life in the outdoors Hannah is passionate about sharing what she loves with others. Hannah takes a “train for you life” approach to fitness and demonstrates a relentless desire to overcome any obstacles she faces. In her endeavours Hannah strives to empower those around her to challenge their own limits and is dedicated to helping them achieve what lies beyond their impossible.
Gayle Kabloona, KapiK1 Guide
Gayle is an Inuit artist and an athlete whose guiding work was born because she was outside all the time! She grew up camping, hunting and fishing in Nunavut. As an adult she began doing self powered expeditions and loved it just as much.
She is currently a ceramicist and printmaker in Ottawa and teaches art as therapy at an addictions healing centre for Inuit. Connection to culture, land and oneself is important to her as is giving back to her Inuit community.
Francois Boucher - KapiK1 Marketing and Outreach Support
For the past 20 years, François has been working in the client development and marketing industry, developing and implementing strategies focused on overall client satisfaction and company growth.
While not at work, he developed his passion for hiking and travelling all while fuelling his appetite for continuous learning. The one constant on every trip abroad would be stopping at local coffee plantations, soaking in the local knowledge, discovering the great beans and savouring the incredible coffee that would be offered.
Four years ago, a new passion emerged in ultra running. This passion for trail running and endurance sports would lead François to join the team at Distances+ magazine as a collaborator and would be the starting point of his friendship with Ray in December 2019 while interviewing him for an article prior to his Baffin expedition.
Charlotte Vasarhelyi - KapiK1 Logistics
I began running in high school when a teacher showed me that if I believed in myself anything was possible. This life changing experience created a passion for running and for working with youth. Through volunteering with impossible2Possible, and other youth groups, I have had the opportunity to give back, to be a positive role model and have a meaningful impact on youth.
My love for nature, coupled with endurance athletics lead me to adventure racing, fast packing and ultra running early in adult life. Since then, I have completed the relay, supported, and self-supported speed records on the Bruce trail in Ontario, and through hiked other trials such as the JMT. I have competed internationally with Team Canada and have run ultramarathons all over the world ranging from 100 milers to days in length.
I work as an engineering analyst at Toyota, and balance a busy family, work life with a love for adventure and the outdoors.