Former South African international swimmer Sarah Ferguson has linked her talent for swimming to a passion for the environment by joining SPAR Eastern Cape as an ambassador in their Stop Plastic campaign. The long-distance ace was a top pool competitor during the 2000s, swimming for South Africa in a number of World Cups, but is now putting her skills to work for another cause. This month she formed a partnership with SPAR EC in their campaign to educate the public about the dangers of plastic pollution, combining it with challenging swims around the world. She recently completed a 100km Elephant Coast swim, which took her from southern Mozambique to northern KwaZulu-Natal over a period of six days. The association with SPAR EC was sparked by a presentation Ferguson, who lives in Durban North, gave after a 2km swim in Hawaii, in which she became aware of the dangers of plastic to the environment. "I came to Port Elizabeth for a meeting and they liked what they saw," she said. "Equally I was keen to work with them to promote their Plastic campaign." In April this year, SPAR EC took the bold step of trying to limit the use of plastic in their stores by encouraging consumers to make use of alternative packaging options available at all outlets. In particular, they are focused on limiting single-use plastic, which includes items such as plastic bags. At that stage, managing director Conrad Isaac said it was time to take a stand and to set an example to others, even if the journey started with one small step. "Let us start by cleaning up our own backyard. If we are able to maintain the spaces in which we live and work by reducing the plastic content, that is a start. "And if it helps to clean up the world, well that would be just great." That initiative is now beginning to stretch beyond the borders of the Eastern Cape, with ambassadors such as Ferguson joining the fight against plastic pollution. "SPAR EC are supporting this trip, . . .
Drab winter is over. Strap in for the colours of spring, with The Happiest 5K on the Planet The Color Run believes in keeping the fire alive in a long-term relationship, and its old flame Jozi is in for a bit of a spoil this year. The Happiest 5K on the Planet is welcoming spring in Joburg with the grandest parade yet. South Africa is the first country in the world to welcome The Carnival Tour, so stand aside New Orleans and Rio de Janeiro. And, for the first time ever, The Carnival Tour will be handing out exclusive The Color Run finishers’ medals! Where to wear your feathers: Place: Roosevelt High, 1 Thibault St, Roosevelt Park Johannesburg Date: 16 September 2018 Time: Start gun goes off at 10:00. Be there at least by 09:00 to absorb the spirit of The Carnival Tour The Color Run is the world’s largest running series. It was founded in 2011, with the mission of bringing people together to make the world a happier, healthier place. Dubbed “The Happiest 5K on the Planet”, The Color Run is less about your 10-minute-mile, and more about having the time of your life. Come and revel in health, happiness, and community in an atmosphere of pure celebration. The Carnival Tour brings with it stilt walkers, balloon shapers, music, good-natured clowning around, and colour, colour, colour. Participants begin the race in their white The Color Run T-shirts, and complete it covered in colour. The Color Run has now been experienced by over six million runners, in more than 40 countries around the world. CLICK HERE to submit your press release to MyPR.co.za. . . .
The NFB Great Zuurberg Trail Run (GZTRun) is excited to announce that Merrell is on board for a second year as a support sponsor. Adventure seekers taking part in the 2019 NFB Great Zuurberg Trail Run will be able to do so in a pair of Merrell trail running shoes. Merrell is partnering with GZTRun and product-sponsoring its trail-running footwear to each participant. David Palmer from Medicus Shoes, the authorised distributor of Merrell brand footwear remarks on the partnership, saying, “We would like to offer participants the opportunity to hit the trail and live the real moments and experiences, in Merrell trail-running footwear. “We are true believers in the brand's product features and technical specifications, with its out-of-the-box comfort. Partnering with GZTRun provides the opportunity to express our passion for the brand by putting Merrell trail-running footwear onto participant's feet. This opens channels to explore, express, and do, what these enthusiasts adore in the outdoors, and allows us the opportunity to identify true brand influencers.” Siska van der Bijl, NFB GZTRun race director is excited for the second race saying: “The NFB Great Zuurberg Trail Run embraces trail running’s pioneering and adventurous spirit. So the partnership with Merrell sings to both brand values. “Our passion for the region drives us. Runners pass a cycad, estimated to be around a 1,000 years old, run through a beautiful alley of yellowwood trees, and navigate some technical trails. The route is diverse. And our races are unique. We believe our differentiators are our prestigious trails, high-end partners and discerning athletes. Plus our unashamedly luxurious twist.” About the NFB Great Zuurberg Trail Run Taking place May 31st to June 2nd 2019, the NFB GZTRun is a boutique event taking participants through South Africa’s most majestic trails. The route includes exclusive tracks in the untamed wild of Addo, traverses the Zuurberg mountains, and crosses . . .
This weekend marked a proud moment for the South African world of motorsport. Camden Mc Lellan, a 13-year old motocross racer from Germiston, made history when he swept up the 2018 FIM European Championship. He now becomes the first South African rider to have ever claimed a title in European Championship history. With five consecutive National Championships behind his name, Mc Lellan’s potential has fast become a talking point for local motocross fans. The youngster was first exposed to the international circuit two years ago, where he proved to have more than enough speed to keep up with the world’s top racing talent. “With our first few trips to the USA and Europe, we quickly realised that he had enough speed to compete but just needed exposure to that level of competition on a regular basis if becoming a pro would ever be on the cards,” explained his mother, Cheryl Mc Lellan. A turning point in the rider’s fast-growing career came in 2017 when he managed to balance his pursuit of another South African National Championship with a part-time racing schedule in Europe. He was ultimately crowned Pro Mini Champion for the second time, and made the bold decision to leave South Africa and base himself in Germany to commit to a full international season of racing. In what he describes as the ‘biggest race of his career’, Mc Lellan lined up as the underdog. A slow start put him in 13th place where he began to chase down the world’s leading riders. With a few laps left in the first moto, he pulled off enough passes to take the lead and ultimately storm to his sweetest victory yet. A similar situation unfolded in the second moto where a second place finish saw him snatch up the overall win. “I am extremely happy with the win, especially after coming in as the underdog. It feels awesome to beat everyone who underestimated me! Racing overseas is super competitive, and that’s what I need. It been hard to leave all my . . .
Bradley Cox – the name on every National Cross Country fan's lips after an intense weekend of racing in Swaziland. The MOTUL Alfie Cox Racing athlete conquered a 320km route of uncharted forests and technical terrain to storm to the overall victory on Saturday. In a tight field of South Africa's top racing talent, the win comes espcially sweet for Cox. In amongst the crowd of supporters was motorsport legend Alfie Cox, who was the first the embrace his son at the finish line. “Brad is filling his dad's boots!” - was a line that was repeated in the pits as the event drew to a close. Alfie thinks differently, however, and explained: “Can't be too easy for him, there's a lot of expectations! But he knows he has to do it for himself… knows he doesn’t have to do anything for me. I don’t have to live my dreams through my child – I’ve done it. The motivation to train doesn't come from me, that's all him. He's becoming his own champion!” It’s not a boast, but a statement of pure contentment. We chat to Bradley about what it's been like to be raised by the legendary Alfie Cox, and how he's dealt with the expectations to be like his father as he pursues a motosport career of his own: I think the first question on everyone’s mind is what it was like to grow up with a motorsport legend as a father? It has its pros and cons. At the end of the day you just see him as your dad, with all his funny jokes and goofy mannerisms – except everyone wants to take pictures with him. What were some of the stand out moments of your dad’s career that were especially significant to you as a child? I was quite young when he was at the peak of his career, but one of the stand-out moments was definitely in 2005 when he did his last Dakar Rally on a bike. I remember being at the finish line waiting for him, and KTM had put on such a massive finale event. At what point did you embrace the Cox racing genes and decide that this sport was something that you also really . . .
The promising career of teenage cyclist Ian Els has been given serious impetus with his recent appointment as an ambassador for HEAD Bikes in South Africa. The 15-year-old Pretoria schoolboy will make his debut as an ambassador for the cycling equipment giant on Saturday in Bloemfontein, where he will compete in the SA National XCO Championships. Under HEAD Bikes SA, the highly rated HEAD bicycles are available to South African consumers following a distribution agreement signed with the European parent company late last year. The Garsfontein grade 9 pupil will have his first chance to carry out his role at a major event in Bloem this weekend as he strives to consolidate his position as one of the country's most talented young mountain bikers. He is over the moon with the chance he has received and described the call from HEAD Bikes SA to join them as an ambassador as "my greatest phone call ever". "The HEAD Bikes team have strong values because cycling is their life, too, and they also love every second of what they do," said Els. Having started on July 1, he will fill the role until August 31 next year, getting a dream opportunity to promote HEAD's quality products. The partnership will provide him with a top-of-the-range hardtail bike from HEAD, the Trenton IV. In addition he will receive casual HEAD apparel and a Westfalia BC 75 bicycle carrier to make travelling to and from races easier. Having been a cycling fanatic since he can remember, Els, who lives in Zwavelpoort in Pretoria, said the bike had always been "my happy place". "To be the South African champion in XCO and represent my country is my aim, but I think the most important thing in life is to love and enjoy what you do," said last year's Spur Schools Series national champion. "Cycling is my life. I work very hard, but I love every second of it. "When younger cyclists approach me and I realise that I have made a difference - well, that is why we live." Having made . . .
KWAZULU-NATAL, BLYTHEDALE COASTAL ESTATE – Due to its immense popularity, the South African Obstacle Course Racing industry has, over the past few years, ensured that this past weekend’s inaugural South African Obstacle Course Racing Championship was a world-class event according to the two 2018 South African OCR Champions, Thomas van Tonder and Trish Bahlmann. Responsible for bringing the OCR Championships to South Africa is Fritz Pienaar, CEO of Advendurance and the Warrior Company, powered by Reebok, and SAOCR, which was endorsed by Obstacle Course Racing World Championships (OCRWC). The first South African OCR Championships was held in conjunction with at Toyota Warrior Race #5 at Blythedale Coastal Estate on the 14th and 15th July 2018. Set against a backdrop of pristine beaches, unspoiled forest, rivers and estuaries, the Blythedale Coastal Estate was the perfect setting for the South African OCR Championships. The OCR World Championships structure is Age Group and Pro Championships, and by building upon the 10Km Commando Elite and 15Km Black Ops Elite divisions respectively, each event featured distinct championship obstacles, with exclusive podium medals and a prize purse exceeding R200 000. Featuring a full compliment of South Africa’s top OCR athletes, the Black Ops Elite/SA OCR Championship race was a gruelling 19km trail course with 35 Warrior series finale obstacles that included four brand-new obstacles. The top three male and female athletes would receive cash prizes and free entry into the Pro Division World OCR Championships to be held on 19 - 21 October 2018 in London, England. The men’s Black Ops Elite/SA OCR Champs race was hotly contested between South Africa’s top 2 OCR athletes, Thomas van Tonder (Warrior Brand Ambassador) and Claude Eksteen (Supa Mama). It was neck-and-neck, changing the lead throughout the race, but it was Van Tonder who proved strongest on the day, crossing the Championship line in 01h44m19s, just six minutes . . .
The Madibaz tennis team will return to the A section of the University Sport South Africa tournament next year after earning promotion at the recent week held in Bloemfontein. Nelson Mandela University were unable to play in last year's event because of student strikes and had to compete in the B section this year, despite an application to be included in the top division. Team coach Hennie de Klerk explained that the USSA regulations did not allow for a team to play in the A section if they had missed the previous tournament, adding that Wits "were in the same boat". Overcoming extremely cold early-morning conditions in the Free State capital, he said Madibaz achieved their objective of getting back into the A section. "Going into the week, the team expected to win promotion because we are traditionally one of the country's strong tennis universities," said De Klerk. "For example, we were fifth the last time we competed in the A section." This year, Madibaz faced tough opposition from teams such as Wits and the B sides from the Pretoria, Stellenbosch and Potchefstroom universities. De Klerk said the promotion was just reward for the work the players had put in. "We compete with some very strong varsities, who pour their resources into scooping up the top young talent in South Africa. "Free State won the event for the eleventh year in a row, giving you an idea of the emphasis they place on attracting top players, as well as coaching and conditioning experts. "However, our performance showed that we are competitive against the top sides. The whole team must be congratulated for their efforts. "They showed great character and grit to win some long three-set matches. There was good player support and pride in Mandela University," De Klerk said. The outcome was particularly noteworthy given the players' academic commitments. "A big challenge was that the tournament was held just after the mid-year exams. That can make preparations . . .
The award-winning real estate group Tyson Properties recently teamed up with Ballers Soccer Club to give young boys and girls in Johannesburg the chance to take their football skills to the next level. The company co-sponsored a soccer clinic at the Pirates Club in Greenside for boys and girls in the under-6 to under-12 age groups. The five-day soccer camp provided an opportunity for young players to get expert coaching through a specialised programme using the likes of Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo and Neymar as inspiration. Chris Tyson, managing director of Tyson Properties, said the company was keen to see youngsters given an opportunity to hone their skills and further their football talents. “Involving ourselves with communities in which we sell and rent properties, and investing in the well-being of the people in these areas is important to us,” Tyson said. He added that as Tyson Properties had recently broadened its horizons in Gauteng, it was a good time to extend to Johannesburg its ongoing successful Cape Town sponsorship to Soccer School. Achieving important “goals” of growth and expansion were priorities for the company: the Gauteng flagship office in the Design Quarter area of Fourways recently extended its reach to surrounding high-growth nodes. In addition, Tyson Properties has recently opened a Dunkeld branch and will have covered the north when its Westerly office opens early next year. The Cape-based Soccer School runs all year-round training for children in the Under-4 to Under-14 age-group categories. Owner and founder Liam Shirley, explained that “It’s designed to instil confidence in youngsters’ soccer ability. It is an all-inclusive programme for children of all abilities that focuses on helping them leave our sessions with increased confidence.” He thanked Tyson Properties for their support in making the Ballers Soccer School clinic more accessible to more children. For more information, visit www.tysonprop.co.za CLICK . . .
The Madibaz surfing team will be aiming to go all the way when they target the University Sport South Africa title at Victoria Bay near George, starting tomorrow. In last year's tournament, the Nelson Mandela Bay surfers came within a whisker of winning the overall title, ultimately losing to the University of Cape Town by just eight points. Madibaz Surfing manager Melinda Goosen said today that, following a weekend camp at Vic Bay last month, there was a sense of confidence in the squad. "The team selection started in April already, when the first trials were held. "The team was finalised after three sets of trials and the surfers spent a weekend in Vic Bay from June 15 to 17 for their final preparations." Good conditions were expected at the popular surfing spot on the Southern Cape coastline, but Goosen acknowledged that the Madibaz surfers would have to adapt to some challenges. "The conditions can also get tough and we will just concentrate on the competition day by day," she said. "The surf will obviously be the same for everyone and it is the surfer who comes out best on the day who will progress. "We have had good results at Vic Bay in previous years and we hope to build on that." Goosen added that they had a number of talented and experienced surfers in their squad. Some had competed in previous USSA tournaments and knew what to expect. "Gregory Cuthbert, our top male, who came second in the individual section last year, and Tristan Pringle, who made the 2017 semifinals, will be leading the way. "On the women's side, Britney Linder is our No 1 seed. She finished second last year. We also have a newcomer in Tahra Uren, but she is an experienced surfer and will add much value to the squad. "Over the years we have had good team dynamics, with all our surfers progressing to the second round, which is a great achievement in itself." Besides the individual performances, she said the team effort was as important, with an . . .