“Sport is my personal talent that I have been given by God.
It is such a blessing knowing that I can put a mark out there in the world and try to inspire others to reach their dream”
Wayde Van Niekerk lives in Bloemfontein, South Africa and he first came to prominence in 2010 when he managed to qualify for the 200m at the 2010 IAAF World Junior Championships in Moncton, Canada.
The 4th place in Canada was the beginning of something special, but in 2011 after he clocked 20.57 taking his first South African senior title, he started suffering an injury that compromised his progress for more than two years.
Together with the coach Anna Botha they started working on a new program building the bases that in 2013 and 2014 paid them back with a personal best 45.09 over 400m in Ostrava in June 2013 and a first national title over his own specialist distance together with an appearance in Moscow World Championships.
“I firmly believe that this has been a talent placed to me and I work hard everyday…I just want to do it because this is my way of saying thanks to the Lord”
In 2014 Wayde Van Niekerk made his mark on the world stage with the South African record of 44.38 at the IAAF Diamond League meeting in New York, one of the three occasions on which he broke the 45 seconds barrier during the year.
Silver were the two medals he got, first at the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow 2014 and then at the African Championships in Marrakesh.
“My motto is It has to be done! The moment is not going to wait for me and I need to be in the moment so it has to be done, it is the only way I think of things”.
2015 has been the year of the victories over 400m: New York, London and Paris with a short-lived African Record 43.96 clocked in Paris, as well as his first ever sub 20 sec 200m in Luzern, which made him become one of the four men in history to break both 44sec and 20sec.
In Beijing at the IAAF World Championships 2015 he won the gold medal clocking 43.38 sec, the 4th fastest time in the history of 400m.
“This is why I love doing what I am doing, I have fallen in love with the track because of speed; as a young kid I have always thought of being the fastest in the world and wanted to break barriers and times as a young boy, so when it comes to speed I want to be as fast as I can be humanly possible”.
2010 2nd South Africa Junior Championships 200m 21.15
2010 4th World Junior Championships 200m (Canada) 21.02
2011 1st South African Junior Championships 100m 10.48
2011 1st South African Junior Championships 200m 20.67
2011 1st South African Championships 200m 20.57
2011 4th African Junior Championships 200m (Gaborone) 21.19
2013 1st South African U23 Championships 400m 45.83
2013 1st South African Championships 400m 45.99
2013 3rd SF Universiade 400m (Kazan) 46.39
2013 5th ht IAAF World Championships 400m (Moscow) 46.37
2014 1st South African Championships 400m 44.92
2014 2nd Commonwealth Games 400m (Glasgow) 44.68
2014 2nd African Championships 400m (Marrakech) 45.00
2014 4th Continental Cup 400m (Marrakech) 45.27
2014 1st Continental Cup 4x400m (Marrakech) 3:00.03
2015 1st South African Championships 400m 44.91
2015 1st IAAF World Championships 400m (Beijing) 43.48