The first in the New Year swimming meet of South Africa took place at past weekend at Nelspruit, capital of the Mpumalanga (in Zulu — “The Place, Where the Sun Rises”) province. The Mpumalanga’s leg of the South African Swimming Grand Prix kicked off the 2016 swimming season in a style with plenty of fast times and impressive performances at the Nelspruit’s 50-meter swimming pool.
Olympic champion of London-2012 Chad le Clos started his Rio-2016 Olympic Games’ preparation with a gold medal in the 100 m freestyle, touching the wall in 49,22 ahead of Calvyn Justus (50,42) and Caydon Muller (50,76) and later on won the 50 m butterfly in 24,14 with Clayton Jimmie finishing second with 24,71 and Reynard Wessels third in 25,13.
After that Chad cruised by the opposition in the 100 m butterfly, winning the race with a time of 51,82, ahead of Clayton Jimmie in 55,15 and Eben Vorster (55,85).
Vorster also scooped the gold in the 200 m individual medley, clocking 2.07,80 to Jack Carlisle’s 2.12,44 and Luan Grobbelaar with 2.15,32, while Jimmie won the silver in the 50 m freestyle in 23,23 ahead of Reynard Wessels in 23,64 and behind Douglas Erasmus (24,02).
The remaining stops of the SA Swimming Grand Prix will be held as follows: Kings Park Swimming Pool (Durban) – 5-7th February, Newton Park Swimming Pool (Port Elizabeth) – 19-20th February and Stellenbosch University Swimming Pool (Cape Town) – 26-28th February.
Photo: Fabio Ferrari-La Presse