Canoeists battle it out at Germiston Lake

The event was held to select a team to represent Gauteng in the national sprint champs in March.

Nicholas Weeks and David Gerber won their categories during the Gauteng Canoe Union (GCU) provincial sprint championships at Germiston Lake on January 20.

A Benoni High alumna, Weeks, who is on the verge of qualifying for Paris 2024 after winning the Africa Olympic Qualifying Champs in November, won the 1 000m race in 04:04 and the 500m dash in 01:47. He also clocked 37 seconds to win the 200m sprint.

David Gerber.

Weeks needs to win a qualifying event in March to seal his spot for the Olympic Games in France between July and August.

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Gerber, from the East Rand Kayaking Club (ERK), won the 200m K1 race in 38 seconds and the 500m K2 event, with partner Henry van der Walt, in 01:47 in the sub-veteran category.

The event allowed the provincial selectors to prepare the team to represent Gauteng in the SA Sprint Champs at Victoria Lake Canoe Club in March.

Nicholas Weeks.

“Sprint is a crucial discipline in the canoeing sport because it is an Olympic discipline. Several SA youth have been selected over the years to participate in international regattas to prepare them for possible future participation at the Olympics.

“A large contingent of paddlers from throughout Gauteng participated in the event.

“We had different age groups – from U8 through to those over 80. They participated in 200m, 500m, 1 000m events, and long-distance sprints of 2 000m (U12) and 5 000m for older paddlers,” said GCU PRO Jennie Dallas.

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