Wesley Botton
Chief sports writer
1 minute read
16 Apr 2016
7:38 pm

Semenya, Harmse set unique records

Wesley Botton

Semenya won the 400m, 800m and 1 500m titles in the space of four hours.

Caster Semenya. Photo: Roger Sedres/Gallo Images

Former world 800m champion Caster Semenya stole the show on the second and final day of the SA Athletics Championships in Stellenbosch on Saturday.

Semenya won the 400m, 800m and 1 500m titles in the space of four hours, becoming the first athlete in the history of the annual event to achieve the feat.

After winning the 400m race in 50.76 seconds, chopping 0.71 off her personal best, she returned 45 minutes later to secure the 800m gold in 1:58.46, her fastest time this year in her specialist event.

Later in the day she won a tactical 1 500m race in 4:10.93, charging clear of US-based athlete Dominique Scott down the home straight to bag a comfortable victory.

“I didn’t expect to go this fast,” Semenya said.

“I wanted to run under 4:10.00 in the 1 500m, but it’s ok. The 400m and 800m were marvellous. I’m happy with my performances.”

In another remarkable effort, 43-year-old athlete Chris Harmse extended a virtually unbreakable record by earning his 21st consecutive national title in the men’s hammer throw.

The former Commonwealth Games champion launched a 73.32m heave to win gold as the oldest man in the line-up.