Skinny Cappuccino wins 1950km endurance race

Friday, 20 June 2014 17:48 | Written by  Gameplan Media
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Clyde Barendse (second from left) celebrates winning the month-long 1950km Coastal Challenge against runner Steve Black with his supporters (from left) Nikki Heyns, second Tom Bodley and Zoog Heyns Clyde Barendse (second from left) celebrates winning the month-long 1950km Coastal Challenge against runner Steve Black with his supporters (from left) Nikki Heyns, second Tom Bodley and Zoog Heyns Credits: Dave MacLeod

Durban - Ultra athlete Steve Black completed his 1950km "Coastal Challenge" charity race from Cape point to Durban nineteen hours behind his surfski rival Clyde Barendse exhausted but exhilarated.

Like the race winner Barendse, who paddled into the DUC beach at 6:30 on Thursday evening after snatching victory with an epic 125km final days paddle, Black was met on the line by cancer fighter Nikki "Lettie" Heyns, who was the inspiration and focus of the endurance event.

Mental Challenge

"The hardest part was the mental part," said Black, citing an instance where he saw a sign in Mossel Bay showing 376km to Port Elizabeth, knowing the the distance from Port Elizabeth to Durban was a further 1000km.

Steve Black Finishes

Steve Black finishes the last few metres of his epic run from Cape Town to Durban

"I had already been running for 600km at that stage," said Black. "That nearly blew my mind. I just had to manage each day as it came. There was no tomorrow, just the now."

Inspiration

Black said that he drew inspiration from Lettie Heyns in the frequent difficult times.

"Whenever I was really taking strain, I just focussed on Lettie," said Black. "When I was climbing up a big hill and my legs were hurting and I was feeling sorry for myself, I realised that I was still in control, but as a cancer battler Lettie is not always in control. Yet she is such an inspiration to me.

"The difference with Lettie is that she is like a shining light. Its her attitude to the problem that is so superb, and that why she has so many people trying to help her."

Clyde Lettie Steve 

(From left) Clyde "Skinny Cappuccino" Barendse at the finish of the Coastal Challenge with Nikki "Lettie" Heyns and runner Steve Black. 

Tactical

Barendse admitted that his race had been largely tactical, trying to take best advantage of the prevailing weather, and when confronted by headwinds or bad weather he could afford to take rest days.

"Steve didn't have that luxury, he just had to get up and go every day," said Barendse.

"It was a weird, quite spiritual trip, with some many coincidental things going on at the same time," he added.

 

Skinny Claim

Clyde "Skinny Cappuccino" Barendse claims the win on Thursday night after a 125km final paddle that ended in the dark in Durban

Raising awareness for cancer

The duo continually raised awareness of the Lettie Festival fundraising and cancer awareness drive, and urged individuals or corporates moved by their epic adventure to make a donation to this cause.

Coastal Challenge

More information can be found at www.coastalchallenge.co.za where donations to the cause can be made online.

 

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