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FLCC KLIP – PRE DUSI TRAINING RACE – SUNDAY 1 DECEMBER 2019
The 30km river race with 3 km portage, hosted by Florida Lake Canoe Club on 1 December 2019, as a Dusi training race took place on Sunday 1 December 2019 – from Daleside, to Meyerton.
The portage is an essential part of the Dusi training as paddlers have to get out of the river and run with their boat for up to 18kms on the endurance event scheduled to take place in February 2020, as the world’s toughest canoeing endurance event and provides excellent practice for paddlers to speedily and efficiently get out of their boat, grab it, pick it up, run with it for a distance, climb up or down a river bank with it, and put it back in the river to continue the race paddling in the current, white water and through the rapids.
The top finishers and winners of the event were Under 23 youngsters from Soweto, (Soweto Canoe and Recreation Club based at Power Park, Orlando) – Sibusiso Chwayi and Zanentlantla Mbala in a time of 1 hour 53 minutes. Second place finishers were Loveday Zondi (VIC) partnered with MJ Robb (Dabs) – senior age category finishers in 1 hour 54, while the 3rd place overall podium winners were Alex Roberts and Clint Cook (Dabs/KZN) as Seniors in 1:58.
Kelvin Byres and Mark Garden (Dabs) were the top Veteran finishers in 2:06, while Connor and Nicholas Erwee (Dabs) won the top Junior podium position although only Under 16 and Under 14, finishing in 2:28.
Nkosi Mzolo with Tinyiko Mahwayi (SCARC) won the Mixed Double category finishing in 2:33, 13th overall, and Jaco Lategan (Dabs) was the first K1 finisher in 3:04 as the 28th across the finish line.
It was a very hot day in Gauteng’s recent heatwave and despite recent rains the river level had already dropped to a bony level on some rapids. The cameradie at the race was jovial and while competitive, there was fair competition and recognition of others abilities and skills – in the event where a marshall erroneously sent a few boats on the wrong course, those who then did the longer distance were graceful in their acknowledgement that they would in any event not have passed them and no disciplinary was required – true sportsmanship above all and resolved amicably.
Due to small numbers at the races and high costs to organise the events, timekeeping was done manually and subject to errors, however paddlers awarded podium position/prizemoney erroneously were also graceful and insistent on returning the prize to the correct winners, with a photo to record their achievement.
The bonds between clubs are also an important part of the GCU race relationship and FLCC is grateful to the paddlers from other clubs who while not registered, or not training for the Dusi, put up their hands to assist as marshalls for a small club with minimal member numbers which is much appreciated.
With every available hand from the club running around to assist with refreshments, taking entries, recording results, or organising the water point and marshalling, we would also like to thank the members of the West Rand Photographic Club who fill in by taking awesome photos for our racing paddlers!!