Each time that I interview one of our young athletes in the meet THE YOUNG ATHLETES SERIES, I am honoured and overwhelmed by this new generation of determined youth that I see emerging – it really humbles, inspires and excites me.
Today marks the shift of gears from swimming to Biathle with the young Cayde de Waal taking centre stage. This little champion is currently the #1 Biathlete in gauteng in his age group (he has just recently won the Northern Gauteng Championships). Biathles (at his age) consist of a 500m run – 50m swim – 500m run with transitions in between each leg.
He brilliantly concluded the last two years on a high note when he finished Top 10 in South Africa – wow! Now he is going full force and training hard, aiming for a Top 5 finish this year in June at Buffalo city. He is also proudly the Schools League champion for his district.
Why is it always that the top athletes often also excel at academics? Cayde is a dedicated academic too, being part of the top 15 in his grade (6). This young man is an all-rounder of note taking part in School Athletics (1200m), Cross Country, Biathle, Swimming and next term it will be cricket. Overall he is a happy, loving, family-orientated little boy who simply loves what he does.
Read on to find out more about this splendid young champion:
Who are you, what sport are you passionate about, and in what year were you born?
My name is Cayde de Waal, I was born on the 2nd September 2003 and I am really passionate about Biathle.
At what age did you start biathle and why?
I did my first biathle when I was 9 years old. The reason I started biathle was because I was very good at both swimming and running and biathle is a combination of both of these events.
Would you like to share some highlights about your sports events so far?
My definite highlight would be the first time I qualified to take part at the South African Biathle Championships and finished 10th overall.
If you were not going to be involved in biathle what sport do you think you would be involved in?
Soccer or maybe even club swimming.
Tell me a little bit about your home and school life?
I live with my mom, dad and younger sister. I go to Laerskool Dalview which is an afrikaans primary school, even though I am English. I enjoy playing with my friends, especially cricket and touch rugby.
How do you manage to fit in both sports and academics into your schedule?
It is difficult and requires a lot of hard work so I have to listen and work hard when I’m in class. When I get home after school I need to knuckle-down and finish my homework and studies before I can go and train. I definitely do feel that being busy with my sport helps me do better with my academics.
Tell me about what you like to do to relax?
I like to play TV games and I take my PS Vita everywhere with me. I also enjoy spending time with my friends or watching movies with my family.
What is your favorite food?
My favorite food is Alfredo, especially the one from Pizza Chicken Perfect.
Who is your sports hero in the sports that you are involved in? What have you learned from him / her?
My sports hero is my running coach Justin Opitz. He has taught me that the most important thing is to never give up and never slow down. When you are at your most tired spot during a race, you need to step up your pace just that little bit more and push through.
Apart from (the sports that you are involved in) which other athlete do you admire
AB de Villiers, because he is so talented at so many things.
What is your personal favourite motivational quote?
“You either make dust or eat dust”, H. Jackson Brown, Jr.
Thank you so much Cayde for taking this interview. We would like to wish you all the best for the big Championships coming up in June and beyond. We look forward to following your progress and exciting journey ahead. Blessings!