Proving age is just a number

2018-09-25 06:01
PHOTO: Jetline Action PhotoHester Bekker (runner number 85) in action at the 2017 Totalsports Women’s Race in Durban.

PHOTO: Jetline Action PhotoHester Bekker (runner number 85) in action at the 2017 Totalsports Women’s Race in Durban.

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THE Totalsports Women’s Race has become part of the lifestyle of Durban resident Hester Bekker (83).

“Running changed my life in a great way,” says Bekker. “At the age of 70 I was told that I had heart failure. To overcome something so huge I knew that I had to keep going and keep my heart and body healthy and strong. Running allowed me to keep fit despite my illness and health issues.

“I started entering the Totalsports Women’s Race to see how well I could do. I soon realised that I was very competitive. I really enjoyed the race and did really well. I entered every year to see if I could win in my age category and better my time.”

“I’ve taken part eight years in a row,” continues Bekker. “The vibe at the start of the Totalsports Women’s Race is always exciting with runners eagerly awaiting the sound of the start gun. There is always loads of fun, laughter and chatter amongst the ladies and the entertainment is great. It’s a fantastic event.

“I love that PinkDrive is the beneficiary. PinkDrive members come out on event day to create awareness for the cause, while teaching women to do breast examinations. The race and route has always been enjoyable and well supported. My goal is always to do my best. My advice to all runners is to never give up. Be sure to do your best in every race. With God you can do all things and overcome all obstacles.”

The 2018 Totalsports Women’s Race took place earlier this year in Durban, Johannesburg, and Cape Town. The 2018 winners included Glenrose­ Xaba, who proved to be in a league of her own at the Totalsports Women’s Race Durban (Kings Park Athletics Track). Xaba claimed gold in an impressive time of 33 minutes 41 seconds. Jenet Mbhele came in second while Tish Jones finished third.

In Johannesburg, Mamorallo Tjoka crossed the finish line first in a deserving time of 34 minutes 33 seconds. Glenrose Xaba came in second while Cornelia Joubert finished third.

The Cape Town race was won by Annie Bothma in a time of 35 minutes 20 seconds. Zintle Xiniwe came in second while Aynslee van Graan finished third.

In true celebratory fashion, the Totalsports Women’s Race has become known for its live performances by well-known South African artists.

In Durban, Kwaito sensation Dladla Mshunqisi had the crowd on their feet. Jozi runners (and walkers) were treated to a memorable performance by Sho Madjozi, while Capetonians enjoyed a live performance by GoodLuck.

This year each entrant received a fitted event t-shirt, a finisher’s bracelet and a Totalsports head scarf.

The 2018 Totalsports Women’s Race (Durban, Johannesburg and Cape Town) boasted a combined prize purse of R123 600.

The Totalsports Women’s Race proudly supports PinkDrive, a Non-Profit Company (NPC) that is committed to improving breast cancer awareness, education, and providing and offering free services to the medically uninsured across South Africa.

PinkDrive was present at the Totalsports Women’s Race in Durban (July), Johannesburg, and Cape Town offering free clinical breast examinations and educating on the importance of self- breast examinations. — Supplied.

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