Somerset College matriculant makes waves

It was yet another busy school holiday for Somerset College matric pupil, Kira Bester.

Kira represented South Africa at the 2019 ICF Ocean Racing World Championships, which was held in Saint-Pierre de Queberon, France, in mid-September.

She placed fifth in the junior female division, with competitors from 10 countries competing in this division.

She finished the 22km course in just over two hours, with less than a minute separating
her from the competitors ahead of her.

Kira returned home to complete her final prelim exams, at Somerset College, only to leave for Durban a few days later as part of the South African Youth Lifesaving team, to compete at the 2019
International Surf Rescue Challenge, which was held at North Beach, Durban over a three-day period from Saturday September 28.

The ISRC returned to Durban after 20 years, and attracted over 180 competitors.

Australia, New Zealand, America, Spain, Japan and South Africa competed at this three test event, with Australia taking the overall victory and New Zealand as runner-up.

South Africa ended in an overall third place, with some outstanding results from their senior and junior athletes.

Big and unpredictable swell and seas offered some challenging conditions for the athletes during the first two days of the competition. It was suspended halfway through the day during the second test,
when conditions became too
dangerous, and the beach were closed.

Kira ended in second place in the mixed ski relay and tube rescue events, and placed fourth in the Iron Woman and single ski events, behind competitors from Australia and New Zealand.

Kira says this was her final sporting event for the year, and she will now focus on her final exams and achieving the best possible results in these.

Kira has been a member of Strand Lifesaving club since the age of 9, when she joined as a Nipper.

She has been given the opportunity to join Mermaid Surf Lifesaving club, in Australia, as part of their Elite Athlete programme, during their summer season,
and will leave for Australia as soon as she finishes her exams,
to train with and compete for them.