Last week at the Prestige Tuks Top 10 we saw Nicola Middleton and Danielle Verwoerd running two completely different races to gun for the meeting 800m record set by Jana vd Merwe in 2011 of 2:15.40. Verwoerd and Middleton put on quite the show and it came down to an epic finish.

“I can do all things through Christ that strengthens me”, these were the words Nicola Middleton from Stellenberg Highschool repeated to herself before she lined up in what was to be an all or nothing race. Coached by Riel Hauman this youngster only had that record in mind before the race and knew that she had to leave everything on the track.

Middleton races away during the race going for the record as Verwoerd knew where her strength lies and gradually worked herself back into the race up until the last 100m where she also gave it her all to move in next to Middleton and ultimately win the race with a time of 2:14.15 and Middleton crashed over the line in 2nd place with a 2:15.18. Both breaking the record. Middleton had to be helped off the track by paramedics as she could barely walk. What a gutsy run!

With Caster Semenya as her role model Nicola says; “She never gave up through all the obstacles and always strives to do her best, this inspires me to run like her”. Giving your best seems to be the mindset taking over most 800m ladies these days as just this past weekend senior athletes Gena Lofstrand and Anuscha Nice went for a fast time at TUKS with both clocking 2:04 at the end of the day. And if Verwoerd and Middleton continue with this mindset they might just become our next big 800m stars!