Port Elizabeth - Teenage sensation Connor Botha
announced his arrival in the most emphatic way in becoming the first
teenager to triumph in the men’s open division at the General Tire
Lifesaving South Africa National Club Surf Championships
at Kings Beach.
Umhlanga Rocks’ Botha, just 17, is the son of legendary South African international lifesaver Dylan Botha.
And at the 2019 nationals he confirmed that his
career in competitive lifesaving will be as industrious and celebrated
as his dad’s.
Botha beat Fish Hoek’s Nic Notten into third place in
the surf swim, but Notten recovered to take gold in the premier Iron
event. Notten and Anna Notten made it a family day of gold, with each
bagging three first places in individual and
Marine’s Carmel Billson also proved unstoppable in winning the female Iron and taking four golds.
Billson has no equal when it comes to female
lifesaving in South Africa across stillwater, pool and surf. She has
been exceptional this year in being the leading female in the open
division at the stillwater nationals in Bloemfontein and
also in the pool national club championships earlier in the week at Port
Elizabeth’s Newton Park.
Her form in the surf in the last two days has been as commanding and compelling.
Beach flags and sprint specialist Mandi Maritz proved
a class above the rest in taking gold in the flags and sprint. Her
double of 2019 was a repeat of her 2018 double and showed just why she
has consistently been ranked in the top three
internationally. She also won silver in the flags at last year’s world
championships in Adelaide, Australia.
South Africa’s finest masters, nippers, juniors and
seniors have been doing battle at Port Elizabeth’s Kings Beach all week,
with the latter part of the week dedicated to the very best men and
women in the open division.
The core of Team South Africa’s world championship
squad has been in action. These men and women have shown their class and
reinforced why they were selected to represent South Africa.
* History was also made at the Nippers National Club
Pool Championships where five teams beat the old South African record
and the top two teams tied for first in the mixed 8-9 200 LC Metre 4x24
Manikin Relay. Durban Surf and Harties were
the joint winners in a new South African record of 1 min 50.87 seconds.
For all the results visit www.lifesavingsa.co.za