- Weber wins SA’s final gold medal of African Champs
- Tough going in Tongyeong for SA’s Radford
- Double gold for Venter as SA medal count reaches 59
- Winning start for Ellis as Banyana beat Egypt
- Skhosana’s promise to take SA even further forward
- It’s 50 medals for SA at African Championships
- Top-ranked Williams does the double
- Championship records for Brown and relay team
- Gobel grabs share of the lead at Kyalami
- Interim coach Ellis looks to take Banyana even further
Sprint ace Hayes focuses on form as Doha draws closer
- Updated: June 30, 2015
By Mark Etheridge
Despite another impressive double victory in the Berlin Open, South Africa’s leading Paralympian sprinter, Ilse Hayes was focusing more on preparation than podiums.
Biggest date on the Paralympic calendar this year is October’s IPC Athletics World Championships in Doha, Qatar and everything is geared towards that goal.
Earlier in the year Hayes blitzed to a world 100-metre T13 record of 11.89 seconds en route to a 100/200m sprint double. She then followed up with victories in the same events in Germany earlier this month.
But she’s got her sights firmly set on Doha and everything done is part of that target.
‘As always, Berlin didn’t treat us well in terms of weather. But it was the same for everyone out there on the field.’ Conditions didn’t allow for great times but luckily that wasn’t the focus. ‘Our aims for the European competitions were to apply things we have been working on in training in a competition environment.
‘And that went really well. In all my 100m events I worked on the first 30m and have felt improvement with each one. My 200m bend was a huge focus.
‘Grosetto in Italy made it difficult due to the gusting winds but Berlin allowed me to run a great bend. In terms of that the trip was a huge success.
‘Also, it’s also always nice to build new friendships with fellow athletes and to meet new people. At the end of the day you;re going to remember all these memories while your medals are gathering dust.’
Looking forward and Hayes will be looking to escape the chilly Cape winter for a period. ‘We’re planning to go and train in Durban for about two weeks to take advantage of the warm weather. I’ll hopefully run a few races in August and then am still waiting to hear about All Africa Games in September.
‘I have 100m and 200m events there but ultimately worlds is my main focus. I’m going to train really hard these last few months to have the best version of myself at Worlds.’