SA swim stars look to shine as the international speedsters gather in Port Elizabeth
The South African swim stars and a rising pool of talent that competed at the recent Zone 6 as well as Zone 3 & 4 Championships will be out in search of top honors when the inaugural SA International Invitational Swimming meet takes place in Port Elizabeth on 29 and 30 January 2011.
Natalie du Toit’s extraordinary performance during 2010 is sure to continue in 2011 when she competes in the 400 and 800m freestyle races.
Du Toit broke 8 World Records at the Telkom SA Short Course Championships that took place in Pietermaritzburg last year. She maintained her “golden girl” status when she achieved three gold medals at the Commonwealth Games and won two gold and a bronze (SA Record) at the IPC Swimming World Championships in Einhoven.
Swimming in the 50, 100 and 200m butterfly, the young and talented Vanessa Mohr will also be on the track for medals in the friendly city. Mohr recently took the gold in the 100m butterfly and silver in the 50m butterfly at the 10th Senior African Swimming Championships in Morocco.
Mohr will be up against veteran swimmer Mandy Loots in the 50, 100 and 200m butterfly. Loots, who claimed three gold medals with Championship Records and a silver at the 10th Senior African Swimming Championships as well as two bronze medals (200m butterfly) from the FINA/Arena Swimming World Cup in Berlin and Moscow, will also be swimming in the 200m individual medley.
Durbanite Kathryn Meaklim will compete in 6 races (200 and 400m individual medley, 200m butterfly, 100 and 200m breaststroke and the 800m freestyle). Meaklim recently returned home with three bronze medals from the FINA/Arena Swimming World Cup in Singapore and two gold and two bronzes from the 10th Senior African Swimming Championships.
Expert backstroker, Chanelle van Wyk will be looking to kick start 2011 on a high note when she takes to the water in the 50 and 100m backstroke as well as the 50 and 100m butterfly.
Also racing in the 50 and 100m backstroke will be Pretoria’s Karin Prinsloo. With two gold medals from the 10th Senior African Swimming Championships, Prinsloo will also be hitting the water in the 50 and 100m freestyle races.
Chad le Clos will be swimming in the 100 and 200m butterfly, 200 and 400m freestyle as well as the 200 and 400m individual medley. Le Clos had a busy 2010 as he claimed gold and silver medals at the Youth Olympic Games in August, followed by two gold medals at the Commonwealth Games and concluded the year with a gold medal at the FINA World Short Course Championships. The 18 year old is ranked 8th in the 400m IM and 15th in the 200m fly.
Gideon Louw will be competing in the 50 and 100m freestyle. Louw is currently ranked 13th in the world in the 50m freestyle.
Cameron van der Burgh, who is currently ranked 1st in the world in the 50m breaststroke, will also be in action in the 100m breaststroke race. Following the 2010 Commonwealth Games in India, where Van der Burgh walked away with two gold medals, he participated in the first two legs of the FINA/Arena Swimming World Cup, bagging 2 gold medals in Beijing and 2 gold medals in Singapore.
Van der Burgh added another gold medal to his name in the 100m breaststroke and a silver in the 50m breaststroke at the FINA World Short Course Championships which took place in Dubai in December 2010.
(published by Swimming South Africa)