13 for Ironman

LEPHALALE — Lephalale can proudly brag about thirteen athletes who took part in this year’s Ironman competition. They are Willie van Schalkwyk (5:01:41), Madele Nelson (5:14:59), Stompie Nel (5:19:24), Jean du Randt (5:20:19), Annerien van Schalkwyk (5:37:19), Piet Viljoen (5:37:31), Shaun Roper (5:41:26), Geraldine du Randt (5:44:25), Madeleine Calitz (5:45:09), Lizinda Human (5:48:45), Luzelle Pretorius (5:48:45), Rico van Staden (6:09:53) and Elize Grobler (6:59:25).
Early in 2016 prospective Ironman 70.3 triathlon participants gathered together to kick-start their training and rally the group-support, energy and effort needed for the next few months. Signing up for Durban 70.3 Ironman meant that the athletes needed to train for a 1.9 km swim in the sea, a 90 km cycle and a 21 km run.
The training commenced energetically and in the weeks closer to the event it involved enduring some cold winter temperatures, dark Saturday morning cycles but also witnessing beautiful Bushveld sunrises!
Before they knew it, it was time to travel to Durban with bike, gear and loads of nerve – both mental and physical, but they were ready! This is what months of training was for.
In the early hours of race day, the athletes were informed that the swimming leg of the race had been cancelled due to very strong currents. This was met with mixed emotions (from disappointment to relief depending on the amount of training put in beforehand).The athletes knew that the call of the race director was the right one when they witnessed the professionals swimming and being tossed around in the rough seas.
The race thus only involved the 90km cycle and the 21 km run. All Lephalale athletes finished this prestigious race, improving times and surpassing expectations.
In looking back those that participated realised that the Ironman 70.3 was not just about the race day, it was about the journey leading towards it and making memories that will last a lifetime.
Thank you to the community in Lephalale for supporting them through this journey; to the sponsors and lastly but by no means least a big thanks to the Heavenly Father who gave them healthy bodies and strong minds to complete this challenge.

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