Media Statement: Outeniqua Wheelchair Challenge 2019 going ahead

Issued George Municipality, 15th January 2019

George Municipality confirms that the annual Outeniqua Wheelchair Challenge will go ahead for 2019, however the event will be postponed to either the 5th or 12th of May 2019. The potential dates have been established following discussion with international wheelchair athlete, Ernst Van Dyk and will registered to ensure that the race retains its previous accreditation of pre-qualifier for those paraplegic athletes pre-registered with the Para sport Body,  to partake in international races such as the Paralympics.

George municipality and Airports Company South Africa (George) did not agree with the direction that the event was being taken in, as well as the allocation of sponsorship funding. The decision was made by the two main sponsors to continue with the planning and management of the event without the assistance of the Disabled Road Race Foundation.

The challenge has become a pioneering event in South Africa for previously disadvantaged and disabled young athletes, as well as all disabled persons, who embrace the opportunity to take part in a major sporting event that recognises them as athletes, no matter what their level of participation. Both sponsors are in agreement that it is important that this prestigious and exclusive event in South Africa for persons with physical disabilities be successfully continued and it’s longevity ensured by expanding and developing the event into more than just one day on the sporting calendar.

In fact, the George Municipal Sports Development department of the Community Services Directorate intends to preceed the Wheelchair Challenge with a week of events specifically catering to disabled sporting codes. The department will launch their disability awareness and disabled sport development projects for 2019 with the first ever George Disability Awareness Charity Golf Day taking place at Kingswood Golf Course on 11 February 2019.

The Golf Day is  organised in collaboration with disability non-profit organisation Oppie Bol Foundation and is the start of a  programme that  aims to make sport facilities in George accessible to those living with disabilities and implementing sporting codes that enhance the quality of life for persons living with disabilities.

For any enquiries regarding the 2019 OCC please contact Jonique Claasen-Gozongo at the George Municipality on Email jjgozongo@george.gov.za   or Phone 044 801 6346.

Further details will be announced regarding the final date selected as well as registration details for athletes.

 

For any enquiries regarding 2019 OCC please contact the following persons at the George Municipality:

Sophie Fanelo – sfanelo@george.gov.za

Ejustley Boshoff – ejboshoff@george.gov.za

Jonique Claasen-Gozongo – jjgozongo@george.gov.za

Phone: 044 – 801 9111  and  044 801 6346

 

A wheelchair race exclusively for disabled athletes!
And – every year it is getting bigger and better! The number of entries has increased dramatically, with disabled athletes and other persons in wheelchairs flocking to this annual event.

The Challenge is not only unique as being the first and only event exclusively for the disabled in South Africa, but it is staged in the picturesque town of George, in the heart of the spectacular Garden Route in the Western Cape, situated at the foot of the splendour of the Outeniqua Mountains.

Athletes in racing wheelchairs, adapted bicycles, hand cycles, basketball chairs and ordinary wheelchairs have made this into the premier sporting event for the disabled on the South African sporting calendar. It undoubtedly has the potential to develop into one of the best events of its kind in the world!