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Du Preez on a roll with records galore in Europe
- Updated: June 10, 2015
By Mark Etheridge
London Paralympic athlete Pieter du Preez has been smashing records left, right and centre in Switzerland.
Not once, twice or thrice did the Johannesburg-based actuary set a new continental record… he did it on five occasions over the course of three meetings recently.
‘I took part in the Swiss Series Parathletics,’ he told Road to Rio 2016. ‘I broke African records in 200, 400, 800, 1500 and 1500m.’
But that wasn’t all and the cherry on top saw him setting a T51 world record in the 10,000m track event.
‘The last meet in Arbon was the Swiss national championships and it was really hot, with temperatures rising to 36deg Celsius on the track. Still, in these tough conditions I managed to smash the world recored and lowered the 2010 mark of 36:10 to 35:50.96,’ said an ecstatic Du Preez, picture in action above.
He also won all of his races over 800m and longer and placed third in the 400m and fourth in the 100m at the @ipcathletics grand prix event. Both the latter distances are T51 events scheduled to be raced at next year’s Paralympics in Rio.
His new continental records now read as follows: 200m (43.51), 400 (1:24.07), 800 (2:51.03), 1500 (5:27.76), 5000 (18:12.55).
‘Unfortunately there’s no distance stuff for us T51 competitors in Rio but I’m pretty happy with my 400, I didn’t race with sprint wheels and haven’t focused entirely on sprint training so I think I’ll be able to give the sprinter boys a good run for their money at IPC Athletics World Championships come Doha in October.’
For now Du Preez stays in Switzerland for a World Cup event at the weekend ‘and then it’s back home for six weeks and then back here again for cycling world championships.’