Humble BeginningsCaelin van der Westhuizen

“The trials.. when I got my SA clothes… it was my 2nd trials and my first one in which I made the team. After the race I couldn’t walk, I didn’t know if I finished the race. I’ll never forget that moment, that was the first time I knew I really gave my everything.”

This is what Caelin van der Westhuizen recalls as one of her most memorable moments in her running career so far. Finishing top 6 at SA Trials Cross Country this year in the junior ladies race and that by being only 16 years old, 15 at that the time trials took place. She has received SA clothes many times for cross country and was also chosen for the Biathle national team three times.

Coached by Nerissa van der Walt and Alet Kieser at Hoerskool Eldoraigne, Caelin says that without the help and coaching of Kieser she would’ve never received SA clothes and have such amazing achievements behind her name. She holds a 1500m pb of 4:46 and 3000m of 10:20 but she favours the cross country circuit. Nerissa is also her biggest rolemodel.

Many of you will remember Lushano April winning the World Biathle Champs Junior title this year and the articles we did on that leading up to the race. This is the same sport Van der Westhuizen also loves and does besides her athletics and cross country.

“Running is the greatest metaphor in life, because you get out what you put in. I get this picture in my head where I represent my country in the Olympics. That motivates me to train a lot to get where I want to be one day.”

And indeed any athlete should also have those goals and images that drive them in becoming better each and every day. Caelin wants to get SA Clothes again next year in Cross Country and also wants to win the World Champs Biathle. She is also chasing new 1500m and 3000m pb’s of 4:35 and 9:50. We trust that she will keep driving towards these goals and that she will achieve them.

“Being humble and sweet is one of the hardest things you can do on earth” – Jimima Kirke. This is the one sentence that would describe her character the best.

“I know that the Lord has much bigger plans for me in the future in my life. And because He showed it to me in such a beautiful way I run for Him and myself and I will never give up. I want to thank my coach.. I have been with him 5 years now and he believes in me. Also my parents, they help and support me immensely. If I have an off day they will tell me that there are bigger races waiting for me that is still to come. I MAY NEVER GIVE UP.. They do a lot for me, they believe in me and that I will achieve my goals.”

Caelin Van der Westhuizen, Eaglesclub and Backtrack salutes you for your dedication and passion, and we wish you all the best in the 2015 season. May you soar!

EC Media Manager – Adriaan Aldridge