Gold for UJ alumnus Pieter du Preez in 2020 Tokyo Paralympic Games

Pieter du Preez added to South Africa’s medal tally after winning a gold medal in the 2020 Tokyo Paralympic Games in August this year. Du Preez won the gold medal in the Men’s H1 time trial at the famous track.

Despite getting injured in August last year, Pieter du Preez also brought home gold and silver medals after stellar performances in the 2021 Para-cycling Road World Championships in Cascais, Portugal between 9 and 13 June 2021.

In Portugal, he took first position in the road race and came second in the time trial.

Du Preez is a University of Johannesburg (UJ) quadriplegic alumnus who competed in many championships globally during his competitive days at the University.

His win comes after a shoulder injury that he suffered when his day wheelchair brakes failed to stop as he was fetching his 3-year-old child from preschool just 200m from his residence.

His injury in August 2020 meant that he would have had little movement as he already had 15% muscle function compared to an able-bodied person. “The doctors couldn’t operate because they didn’t want to take the chance with me already having so little function because I could have lost function in my arm,” explains du Preez.

Before jetting off to Portugal, du Preez received his COVID-19 vaccine. The South African Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee (SASCOC) has been sending Team SA athletes to get vaccinated ahead of the Tokyo Olympic Games.

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