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Louzanne smashes world record despite strong wind
2017-04-13

Description: Louzanne smashes world record  Tags: Louzanne smashes world record

Louzanne Coetzee and her guide
Khothatso Mokone.
Photo: Johan Roux

Despite the terribly windy conditions at this year’s Nedbank National Championships for the Physically Disabled, Louzanne Coetzee managed to improve her world record in the 5 000 m race.

Record improved by almost 40 seconds
Last year, Coetzee, who works at the Institute for Reconciliation and Social Justice at the University of the Free State (UFS), was the first blind athlete to complete the 5 000 m race in less than 20 minutes.

Her own record in the 5 000 m race (T11 category) was 19:17.06 and with the help of her guide, Khothatso Mokone, she improved it by almost 40 seconds. The new national record now stands at 18:37.23.

Coetzee says the evening before the race the winds were terrible, and she started to wonder what would happen during her race. “Even though the wind was a bit tough, overall it was a good race,” she says.

Overjoyed by exceptional time

She says that when she heard her time was a new record, she was completely overjoyed and could not believe it. “I was aiming to run just under 19 seconds but when I heard that my time was not only a personal best but also a new world record, I was over the moon.”

The Championships took place from 31 March to 4 April in Port Elizabeth. Coetzee and Mokone will be in action in a Grand Prix in Switzerland next month.

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