The year of 2011 is the year for African athletes to both prepare and perform so as to book a spot in the 2012 Olympics in London.
But there’s been a major setback for our athletes with the 2011 African Championships in Cairo, Egypt scheduled for March, being cancelled due to the current volatile situation in the region.
The championships were to double up as the continental Olympic qualifier, allowing one male and one female a spot at the Olympic.
Continental organisers are now looking at various alternatives for qualifying. Our two athletes, Karina Gerber and Jon Paul Raper, had been gearing up their training towards this prestigious event but now have had to refocus.
Both will now have their first 2011 International exposure at the Modern Pentathlon World Cup event in Sassari, Italy from 14-17 April. Both also hope to compete at the Modern Pentathlon World Cup event in Budapest from 5-8 May and then up their game towards the Senior Modern World Championships of September 2011
Nationally, the SA Championships take place on 29-30 April in Bloemfontein.
This year sees the introduction in all World Cup and World championship events of the laser pistol. This technology replaces the old air pistol and will insure a major benefit to the athletes in the combined run-shoot event as well as a more spectator friendly environment that will be very interactive.