The UP athletes have been busy throughout the June/July holidays racing to their best ability and focusing on their specific sports. Athletes like Tebogo Mamatu won the 100m race with a very fast time of 11.04 seconds during the 40th ResisprintMeeting in Switzerland on 30 June. Mamatu is now the second fastest South African female sprinter, just after Carina Horn who clocked a time of 10.98 seconds in Doha last year.
At the World Student Games held in Italy, Zeney Van der Walt won a silver medal in the 400m-hurdle race with a time of 55.73 seconds. Van der Walt ran a season’s best despite placing second and is edging closer to the qualification time of the Tokyo Olympic Games. In order to qualify, Van der Walt will have to reach a time of 54.70 seconds. Van der Walt also managed to achieve a unique record of winning a medal at each major championship she has competed in over the last three years.
Another 400m-hurdler also won a silver medal at the World Student Games. Sokwakhana Zazini dipped under the 49 second mark for the first time making a time of 48.73, therefore setting a new African and South African junior record. Zazini is also the ninth fastest this season in senior international athletics. Carina Horn competed in Sotteville Les Rouen, France on 16 July in an international meet. Horn competed in the 100m-race and won with a time of 11.14 seconds. Horn is trying to qualify for the World Championships in Doha and in order for her to do this she must clock a time of 11.10 seconds or less.
At TuksSwimming, Tatjana Schoenmaker impresses once again in an international competition by winning the 100m and 200m-breaststroke at the World Student Games held in Napoli, Italy in early July. Schoenmaker won the 100m-breaststroke in a time of 1:06.42 which is a new African and South African record. Schoenmaker also won the 200m-breaststroke with a time of 2:22.92. This is the second time she managed to pull off a unique double win at an international gala. She previously also achieved this at the Commonwealth Games in 2018. Schoenmaker will also be competing at the World Aquatics Championships held in Korea on 23 to 24 July.
Another Tuks swimmer, Kaylene Corbett, also competed well at the World Student Games. Corbett finished fourth in the 200m-breaststroke with a time of 2:24.93. The qualification standard for Olympic qualification is a time of 2:25.52 and Corbett successfully managed to fall in the right qualification time. Both Schoenmaker and Corbett have qualified for Tokyo Olympic Games in 2020 after their spectacular performances at the World Student Games.
The recently new TuksYachting club competed at the Intervarsity Yachting Regatta which was held at Durban’s Point Yacht club from 7 to 10 July. The Intervarsity Yachting Regatta was bigger than ever this year with 13 teams from six universities and therefore the challenge to win was big for UP. UP previously won this tournament in 2018 and was determined to do it again this year. They sent two teams to the Regatta and only managed to finish second, just after UCT. The UP A team managed to win all of their races over the three days and only stumbled when they raced against UCT. It was a close race with UP right on UCT’s tail.
There were a few opportunities to overtake UCT, but UCT sailed strong enough to stay ahead and take the win. The final group race of the UP team’s was against UKZN, where UP won by the tightest of margins. There was a scheduled final battle which would determine the winner of the whole tournament. UP and UCT were supposed to race against each other again to determine the winners, but unfortunately the wind did not allow the final battle to happen and therefore UCT became the winners since they had the most wins throughout the group stage races. The six sailors in the UP A team were Damian Muller, Owen Diesel, Naldo le Roux, Yvonne Kok, Frederik du Toit and Jonathan Ham. The six sailors in the B team were Luca Govetto, Jacques du Toit, Pieter Kok, Daniel Wepener, Shaun Johnston and Michaela Robinson. Their next major event where TuksYachting will participate is the USSA tournament held in the Western Cape in December