Garden Route, George (January 2020) – With the 2020 Outeniqua Chair Challenge returning to its familiar slot, many of the perennial favourites will be back to compete in this year’s race.
Athletes like Ernst v Dyk, Pieter du Preez and Stuart McCreadie; radio personality, Martelize Brink as well as the promising young Zach Legward have all confirmed their participation.
The race will once again have an international flavour.
Topping the list is Ghanaian Raphael Botsyo Nkegbe who qualified for the 2020 Tokyo Paralympics when he won the T54 World Wheelchair 100m race in a new personal best of 14.22s at the Desert Challenge Games in Arizona, USA.
Raphael lost his legs to polio at the age of six, but has set his mind to changing people’s perceptions and states that disability can be more in the head than in the mind.
The Namibia National Paralympic Committee (NNPC)’s will send one 42.2 km athlete, and the team from Zimbabwe will include seven athletes.
The prize money has been considerably increased which will ensure that this year’s race is the most competitive yet.
The organisers are encouraging local athletes to enter early. Entries are available on the OCC Website and registrations will be open on 14 February from 8 am to 6 pm at Carpe Diem School. The grand opening will take place at 6pm and the public is welcome to attend.
At least 400 volunteers will be needed to push chairs, so come along and register.
The OCC is truly an occasion for George and the Garden Route to celebrate the spirit of Ubuntu as hundreds of locals freely give of their time to stage what is the biggest race of its kind in the Southern Hemisphere.
As noted diversity advocate Vernā Myers put it, “Diversity is being invited to the party. Inclusion is being asked to dance.”
You are all invited, not only to the party, but to dance.
|OCC 2020 PRIZE MONEY|
|CATEGORY (MALE & FEMALE)||1’ST||2’ND||3’RD|
|10 KM JUNIOR||R1000||R800||R500|
|10 KM SENIOR||R1500||R1000||R500|
|21 KM SENIOR||R2000||R1500||R1000|
|42 KM SENIOR||R10 000||R8 000||R7 000|
The Outeniqua Chair Challenge attracts athletes from all nine provinces as well as from the rest of Africa and abroad. Thousands of visitors descend on the Garden Route, not only having a significant economic impact (estimated to be in the region of R3 million) but also raising awareness of the needs of disabled persons. As a result, the Garden Route has become a premier destination for the disabled. There is a need to assists athletes with costs related to accommodation and transport and acquiring chairs for participants competing in a wide range of racing chairs and hand cycles.
In conclusion Dippenaar said, “The event is about Ubuntu – making a difference in the lives of others. Sponsors invest in people’s lives (persons with disabilities) and together we strive to restore the dignity of those wheelchair-bound person’s lives”.
For more information contact Alewijn Dippenaar, 082 457 5675, firstname.lastname@example.org