Gauteng Sprint Trials – Roodeplaat Dam On 21 / 22 March 2014

While the weather was disappointing with overcast skies and chill gusty winds creating some chop on the sprint lanes from time to time, the sprinting was superb – well done to the young and old paddlers who participated at the Gauteng Sprint Championships over the past weekend on 21 and 22 March. The high numbers of development paddlers in podium positions once again proves the success of the Gauteng transformation programs!

Victor Ladorum prizegiving covering the various distances of 200m, 500m, 1000m, as well as long distance events tied the senior men Martin van der Bergh with Gabriel van Wyk in 2nd place while Nkosi Mzolo managed to clinch the winning position in the K1 category, while Esti van Tonder and Tiffany Kruger had no competition except each other taking 1st and 2nd place respectively, with Phamela Mntonisitshi and Sneziwe Gxobole tying in third.

Under 18 Boys were led by Siyabonga Tyiki with Simnikiwe Ntondini and Colin Ledwaba putting up a fierce competition to finish in 2nd and 3rd overall. Alex Masina won the Under 16 Boys K1 ctegory with Livhuwani Munyai 2nd and Jonty Griesel 3rd, while the Under 14 boys winners were Jonathan jooste, Sibusiso Chwayi and Siphiwe Masela.

It was the first time that C1 paddlers raced at the Gauteng Championships and Raymond Ngobeni, Hosea Seleka and Phillemon Maema were winners in the Men’s race, while the boys race winners were Donald Rahlagame, Mpho Kgosama and Pule Masela.

The Under 14 girls were led by Caroline van der Linde with Bridgitte Koka and Jaime Wellisch taking 2nd and 3rd spot at the prizegiving, while in the Under 12 guppy girls race Abigail Bezuidenhout was 1st with megan Oelofse 2nd and Dineo Malepa 3rd. The Master Men competition included Gunther Grune first, Saal de Jager 2nd and Kevin Hunt 3rd.

The guppy races are always great fun to watch as the little tykes really try so hard and Lyton Oelofse was first Under 8, with Theo Dreyer 2nd. In the Under 10’s Matthew van der Merwe was the VL winner, with Spuko Machate and Luthando Gxobolo in 2nd and 3rd, while the Under 12’s were led by Jaydon Hunt, with Alfred Rahlagame and Keletso Leopa following respectively.

K2 races were also held in various distances where Caroline van der Linde and Megan Oelofse took the Victrix Lodorum medals for Under 14 girls, with Jonathan Jooste and Wian Bornman being 1st Under 14 boys overall, with lucky Moloto and Moeletsi Machate 2nd, and Mpho Hure with Sphiwe Masela third.

In the Under 18 boys, Colin Ledwaba and Alex Masinga were first Under 18 boys, with Siyabonga Tyiki and Simnikiwe Ntondini 2nd, and Livhuwani Munyai with Onke Magadla 3rd.

In the senior men doubles competition Melusi Nxumalo won the overall championships partnered with Siyabonga Twetwa, while Donald Moncho and Macdonald Nkosi were 2nd overall and there was a tie for third where Martin van der Bergh and Clinton Cook crossed the finish line in third place, earning the same points as Gabriel van Wyk and Eduan Dippenaar over the weekends racing!

Esti van Tonder and Tiffany Kruger showed their expertise as the only ladies double making the men work hard for their victories!

Thanks to everybody who helped make the races a success and to the Academy of Canoe Development for hosting the event.

Jennie Dallas