DYNAMIC PADDLING DUO IN WINNING FORM FOR DUSI
The on-the-water partnership between TV&Radio presenter Liezel van der Westhuizen and Greg van Heerden, former high performance Olympic sprint manager for Canoeing South Africa, looks set to cause waves. The dynamic paddling duo showed their mettle by winning the mixed team category in the Breede River Series only weeks before taking on their second The Unlimited Dusi canoe marathon.
Both from Milnerton Canoe Club in the Western Cape, the two only teamed up nine weeks ahead of The Unlimited Dusi in 2012 to finish in a time of 13 hours 22 minutes. This weekend’s performance shows that the pair has achieved a great paddling rapport and that their preparation is on track for The Unlimited Dusi taking place from 14 to 16 February in KwaZulu Natal.
“We really work hard during our paddling training sessions to ensure that we are ready for the demands of this gruelling race. We have become such an effective team that it is hard to believe that Liezel was a total novice a year ago – she did not even know the basics,” remarks Van Heerden, who has been paddling since 1988 and had raced competitively in numerous high profile canoe marathons including the Berg, Breede, Fish and Orange.
Liezel, who loves the outdoors and is always looking for new challenges, explains that her main goal for any race is to finish, to do your best and have fun while doing it. “We’re looking forward to pitting our skills against the other celebrities in The Unlimited Dusi, including 5fm sport presenter Sias du Plessis, Damon Beard of East Coast Radio and Metro FM presenter and Idols judge Unathi Msengana, who will team up with some of the country’s top paddlers. Sias and I will be paddling the event to raise awareness for race charity The Unlimited Child,” says Liezel.
According to Van Heerden, they are definitely ready to take on the mighty Dusi as they know what to expect and have experience combining as a team in race situations. “We had to face off some tough competition in the Breede River Series race with Louw van Riet and his partner pushing us to a sprint finish win and giving us the opportunity to put our paddling skills to the ultimate test,” concludes Van Heerden.
For more information, visit the website at www.theunlimited.co.za.