South African Olympic gold medalist Bianca Buitendag is in Cape Town to motivate local athletes.
B. Buitendag Olympic Games Tokyo 2020
City of Cape Town – On Monday morning, Bianca Buitendag, the South African who won silver in women’s surfing at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, was honoured formally at the premier’s official residence, Leeuwenhof.
An formal meet and greet was held to honour Buitendag’s accomplishment and was attended by Premier Alan Winde and MEC for Cultural Affairs and Sport in the Western Cape, Anroux Marais.
Bianca Buitendag, you have my Highest Praise for Your Olympic Achievements.
She’s a role model for the many young women athletes in our province and country who might one day want to compete in the Olympics, as Winde put it.
Her accomplishments serve as an example of the rewards that may be gained through dedication and perseverance. In the company of MEC Marais, it was a joy to finally meet her in person and offer my congratulations,” remarked Winde.
Marais elaborated, saying, “A professional surfer from Victoria Bay, Bianca grew up in an ocean-loving family and began surfing at a very young age, exploring the Southern Cape’s shoreline for as long as she can remember.
She began surfing at the age of ten for competition and won six national titles in South Africa before she was sixteen.
At the age of 19, she turned pro and began competing on the World Championship Tour in 2013. “She’s been on Tour for five years, finished fourth in the world in 2015, made the finals of four World Tour tournaments, and just returned with a silver medal from the Olympics in Tokyo,” gushed Marais.
Buitendag visited Lavender Hill High School and the 9miles Project at Strandfontein Pavilion, where she spoke to students and delivered a motivational speech on her experiences as an Olympic medalist surfer.
The province has stated its eagerness to participate with her on a similar trip in the near future, beginning in her native Victoria Bay and expanding to the broader George area. This will help figure out the best way to support her efforts to expand access to surfing for young people in the Western Cape.
We are proud of Team SA’s participation in the 2020 Tokyo Paralympic Games and want to extend our congratulations to our Paralympians from the Western Cape, including Anrune Weyers, who won the women’s 400-meter dash, Mpumalelo Mshlonge, who set a new world record in the men’s 200-meter dash, and Kerwin Nomdoe, who set a new African record in the men’s shotput.
When they get back home safely, we’ll have a formal celebration of their accomplishments,” Winde said.