Wesley Botton
Chief sports writer
1 minute read
2 Mar 2016
5:20 pm

Pieter du Preez nominated for Laureus award

Wesley Botton

Du Preez won double gold in the time trial and road race In the H1 class at the Para-Cycling World Champs.

Versatile athlete Pieter du Preez has been nominated for Sportsperson of the Year with a Disability at the prestigious annual Laureus World Sports Awards.

The quadriplegic wheelchair racer and handcyclist was the only South African among the list of nominees announced on Wednesday.

Du Preez, an Ironman triathlete and four-time winner of the Berlin Marathon, enjoyed a super 2015 season.

He won the road race and time trial in the H1 class at the Paracycling World Championships, and in athletics he broke the world record in the 10 000m event in the T51 class, as well as the African records in the 200m and 1 500m.

The actuarial analyst from Joburg was nominated alongside two former winners – French skier Maria Bochet (2014) and Brazilian swimmer Daniel Dias (2009 and 2013) – as well as Cuban sprinter Omara Durand, Chinese sprinter Liu Cuiqing and boccia player Leung Yuk Wing.

If Du Preez wins the accolade, he will become the fourth South African to do so in the disability category after fellow wheelchair racer and handcyclist Ernst van Dyk (2006), retired swimmer Natalie du Toit (2010) and controversial sprinter Oscar Pistorius (2012).

The award winners will be announced at a gala function in Berlin on April 18.