Undoubtedly, Wayde van Niekerk like the Democratic Alliance party stated, “gave the whole nation a reason to wake up proudly South African this morning.”
The DA congratulated Wayde van Niekerk on his world record-breaking performance in the 400 metre final at the Rio Olympics in a statement which reads:
“Van Niekerk not only left the rest of the field trailing in his wake, but also obliterated Michael Johnson’s world record, which stood for seventeen years, with his winning time of 43.03. This magical moment also earned Team South Africa its first gold medal at the 2016 Rio Olympics.
While those who have followed Van Niekerk’s performance in the last 12 months would have anticipated a gold medal, to win it in such spectacular fashion, smashing the world record, was incredible.
His performance en route to winning the gold medal will be cherished as one of South Africa’s greatest moments in the history of athletics.
We hope that his achievements will inspire millions of youngsters throughout the country that it is possible to attain the biggest accomplishment in sports through the pursuit of excellence.”
Records have it that Van Niekerk is the first athlete to have run 100m in under 10 seconds and the 200m in under 20 seconds.
With the gold medal he bagged, Van Niekerk’s astonishing 43.03sec 400 metre record left four time Olympic gold medalist Johnson wondering what record Van Niekerk will shatter next.
“(He) is so young what else can he do? Can he go under 43 seconds? It is something I thought I could do, but never did. Usain Bolt will be retiring soon, this could be the next star of the sport,” Johnson commented.