Empowering youth through sport

2019-01-16 06:00
PHOTO: suppliedAfter his mammoth journey from Johannesburg to Pietermaritzburg in 2018, Olympic silver medallist Terence Parkin (right) will repeat the journey and paddle the 2019 FNB Dusi Canoe Marathon.

PHOTO: suppliedAfter his mammoth journey from Johannesburg to Pietermaritzburg in 2018, Olympic silver medallist Terence Parkin (right) will repeat the journey and paddle the 2019 FNB Dusi Canoe Marathon.

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OLYMPIC swimmer Terence Parkin has confirmed that he will be ending a gruelling 12 day, 1 120 kilometre multi-sport journey with the three-day FNB Dusi Canoe Marathon, which kicks off on February 14.

The deaf Olympic medallist covered 960km in a similar feature in 2018, and plans to extend it this year as part of his drive to raise awareness of water safety through the Princess Charlene of Monaco Foundation.

After leaving from the St Vincent School for the Deaf in Johannesburg on February 4, he will cycle to Midmar dam over five days, then swim eight miles at the aQuellé Midmar Mile, and then run from Midmar to Camps Drift for the start of the FNB Dusi.

He will partner with experienced paddler Mark Mulder in a K2 for the three-day paddle through the Valley of a Thousand Hills, hoping they can erase the nightmare second stage that dogged them last year. “We broke our boat last year and we lost about 45 minutes trying to fix it. Water kept pouring into the boat and I had to pump all the way to Inanda dam, but we managed to get to the end of the second leg at Inanda dam,” he recalls.

Based on his experiences last year, Parkin believes the Dusi forms the toughest part of his odyssey as he comes into the three-day race already fatigued.

“It is very tough because I have done a few hundred kilometres already cycling, swimming, and running. Last year I felt I was really ready but the running leg beforehand really took its toll on my legs as it was mostly downhill. When I met up with Mark (Mulder) I could hardly walk but he was a good leader and helped me a lot. “I am hoping this time will be better as I am focusing a lot on running — its 80km running this year as opposed to 32 last year,” he said.

Parkin has an affinity for ultra-distance endurance events, having just ridden the first Ultimate version of the Northside uBhejane Xtreme mountain bike challenge in December, and thrives on extreme challenges.

He is driven by a desire to raise funds for the Princess Charlene of Monaco Foundation and to raise awareness of the important work that it does in educating and empowering youth with water safety.

“I want to help children in SA to reach their full potential and grow into healthy adults, while at the same time being safe in the water,” Parkin said about the cause.

Currently, Parkin is looking for sponsorship to help raise funds for his cause. Anyone interested in donating or becoming involved can contact Jenny Wentzel at 082 990 3578.

For more information on the Princess Charlene of Monaco Foundation South Africa Foundation visit www.pcmfsa.co.za or follow them on Twitter @PCMFSouthAfrica and Instagram @pcmfsouthafrica — Supplied.


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