Tim Don kicked off his season with a win at the SA Champs last w/e.

Official race report:
Britain’s Tim Don may have won the Africa Cup in Port Elizabeth on Sunday 20 March, but the title of South African Champion went to Claude Eksteen.

The South African Championships were held in conjunction with the Africa Cup in Port Elizabeth on 20 March. Britain’s Tim Don, who trains in Stellenbosch in the South African summer saw this as the perfect opportunity to test his fitness and race against South Africa’s – and Africa’s – best.

Clearly the Brit is in good shape after an almost 2 minute win over Claude Eksteen, but the South African will take great comfort from the fact that this was arguably his best race in a long time.


Held over the usual 1500m swim, 40km cycle and 10km run, Don meant business from the word go. Attacking the minute he hit the water, Henri Schoeman and Jeff Norton were leading the likes of Wikus Weber, Tim Don and Erhard Wolfaardt. By the time they started the second lap the group had a lead of about 35 seconds over Rudolf Naude, Hendrik De Villiers and Claude Eksteen.

Out on the bike – a 3 by 13km loop – the earlier perfect weather conditions had changed to extremely hot. This though did not stop Don from setting his own scorching pace on the bike. Coming out of the water with him and onto the bike leg were Wikus Weber, Erhard Wolfaardt, Henri Schoeman and Morroco’s Medhi Essadiq. Medhi soon fell off the pace with Don, Wolfaardt, Weber and Schoeman rolling together on the bike leg. Weber was having the race of his life. Wolfaardt was also not letting them go. By the start of the 2nd lap the chase group of De Villiers, Eksteen and Naude were 50 seconds adrift.

At the start of the third lap of the bike, Don, Weber, Wolfaardt and Schoeman had almost 90seconds on the chasers. Midway through the third lap though Wolfaardt punctured which effectively ended his race.

The furious pace on the bike was beginning to pay off when Don and Weber entered T2 together with a 90 second lead over the chasing pack. Schoeman was just behind Weber and Don. The 1st 1,5km of the run saw Weber stick to Don and then Tim turned on the heat. He eventually won in a time of 1:54:51 and with Eksteen catching Weber on the final lap he finished 2nd overall and claiming the SA title in 1:56:52. Weber finishing 3rd in a time of 1:57:23 finished off the podium places. His 3rd position overall was good enough to secure his national under 23 elite title ahead of Rudolf Naude in a time of 1:59:41. Defending champion Richard Murray finished 3rd in a time of 2:00:19.

Official results:
Don TIM 1 Male Great Britain 01:54:51
Eksteen CLAUDE 5 Male South Africa 01:56:52
Weber WIKUS 8 Male South Africa 01:57:23
Essadiq MEHDI 6 Male Morocco 01:58:24
De Villiers HENDRIK 3 Male South Africa 01:58:40
Svoboda TOMAS 18 Male Czech Republic 01:59:03
Felgate CHRISTOPHER 4 Male Zimbabwe 01:59:16
Naude RUDOLF 22 Male South Africa 01:59:41
Murray RICHARD 9 Male South Africa 02:00:19
Norton JEFF 19 Male South Africa 02:03:33