Speaking to Perdeby, Pretorius said “It was a good race, I enjoyed myself a lot. The time wasn’t as fast as I wanted, but it was cold and it was a wet track so I’m very happy with what I did.” Pretorius also competed in Wimpy’s 4x100m men’s relay and commented that “It is always tough to do a relay after doing 400m hurdles, but it is a fun event to do and I had a lot of fun doing it.” Pretorius will also be representing team South Africa at the 2018 Commonwealth Games which will be held in Australia between 4 and 15 April 2018.
Chederick van Wyk from the North-West University (Pukke) came first in the Samsung 100m men’s relay race with a time of 0:10:31. Two UP runners were not far behind though with Thembo Monareng placing second in the race in a time of 0:10:32, a split second behind Van Wyk, and Keenan Michau coming third with a time of 0:10:51. On being a part of TuksAthletics, Monareng told Perdeby that he is grateful for being a part of what he described as a family. When asked what he wanted his next achievements to be, Monareng replied, “I want to try dropping my time and making personal bests. I’m just taking it step by step.” Thembo Monareng also competed in the Wimpy’s 4x100m men’s relay race with TuksAthletics placing second in a time of 0:40:52 minutes.
Taylon Bieldt, another UP athlete, placed first in the 100m women’s hurdles sponsored by Samsung. Bieldt placed first in the race with a stunning time of 0:13:71. Regarding her career, Bieldt described her biggest obstacle as herself. “After a few experienced seasons behind me, my biggest obstacle was giving control over to God. It is definitely a mental thing and the more I practice giving up control, the easier I will overcome it.” Bieldt added that music helps her ease the stress and pressure from training. “I do that to calm myself down. Other than that, I am quite familiar with the field I run against […]. The girls are talented; they push me and benefit me more. It’s awesome getting to run and train together.” Bieldt also raced in Wimpy’s 4x100m women’s relay with UP coming first in the relay in a swift time of 0:46:17 minutes.
Before the prize giving ceremony, The UP male and female residences also got a chance to partake in the Varsity Athletics towards the end of the event. The residences got to compete in the Samsung’s Hostel Relay for both men and women. Vividus Ladies won the women’s relay with a time of 00.51.96 while Mopanie won the men’s relay with a time of 0:46:31.
UP won the ‘A’ division of the Varsity Athletics with a score of 31152 beating NWU-Pukke, who came second, by 29 points. UCT won the B division with 16640 points.
Photo: Nkululeko Ngcobo