De Lange on point in Nanjing
Namibia’s junior athletes have put up some strong performances at the Youth Olympic Games (YOG) currently under way in Nanjing, China.
Cyclist Tristan de Lange managed to secure a superb seventh place during the Olympic Cross Country race.
The 17-year old from Windhoek was a mere 3.30 minutes behind the eventual winner Jose Arevalo from Mexico. De Lange had already underlined his good form when he made the quarter-final of the Cross Country Eliminator race on Sunday, while his partner Pascal Marggraff also showed some exceptional performance’s to date.
In other sporting disciplines, swimming ace Zanré Oberholzer started off things with a second place during her first heat in the 50 metre backstroke race with a time of 30.39 seconds. Unfortunately, she was not quite good enough to advance to the semi-finals. Shortly thereafter, her team colleague Sonja Adelaar also made second place in her heat over 200 meter freestyle, but, like Oberholzer, her time wasn’t good enough to advance.
Meanwhile, the Namibian BMX made their maiden appearance at the current games in Nanjing.
Cyclist Pascal Marggraff, was the first Namibian in action when he started at the BMX seeding event on Tuesday. Having very little experience in this event, the 17-year old fought very well to the end to come in at 23rd. Marggraff was one of only 28 riders to complete the race.
He moved to the quarter final where he competed in the second group. Although he managed to improve his time during all three heats (46.250, 45.727, 45.148), it wasn’t enough to see him through to the semi-finals. This was the first time Namibia competed internationally in a BMX event.
The beach volleyball girls Kim Seebach and Stephanie Palmhert got their best result to date. Competing against Kazakhstan, the pair showed great spirit and were close to causing an upset, but eventually their opponents managed to keep an upper hand to win with 21:19. The battle proved to be exhausting for the Namibian girls, as they lost the second set with 21:4.
A total of 30 athletes travelled to this year’s edition of the games and hopefully the vibrant youth will produce better results before the end of the games set for 28 August.