A world class middle distance athlete in the making
Letlhogonolo More in action at training at the Tuks Athletics stadim where he attended at TuksSport High School
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Patience, gaining knowledge and a heart to uplift those around him will be three contributing factors that Letlhogonolo More- the 800m and 1500m specialist- will remember when he steps onto the podium at the Olympic Games one day. Currently working under the tutelage of Coaches Colm O’Connell and Ian Kiprono, More finds himself in a position every middle distance runner wishes to be in.
He is 19-years-old, matriculated from Tuks Sports High School in 2017, and he encompasses a charismatic attitude. ‘In 2015 I went to Tuks Sports High School, I quickly picked up injuries, but I knew what I wanted in life so I didn’t let the injuries demotivate me,’ said More. ‘I decided to take the injuries and later that year I became the first athlete to represent the school at a cross country national championships.’ Determined to inspire, he worked even smarter, and it is paying off slowly but surely. ‘In 2016 I went to national track and field championships, and since then I have been progressing so well because I have been patient.’ Afforded the opportunity to attend ‘The Godfather of Kenyan running’, Brother Colm O’Connell’s, training camp in 2016, everything changed for the Limpopo-born athlete. ‘I was there for a month just to gain knowledge and to see how the Kenyans do things,’ added the champion who believes his actions are what inspire (have always inspired) the people around. ‘When I was in matric, I saw I have the potential to become a leader, a mentor to others and that’s when I saw what I have been doing all along, I have been inspiring people.’
Brought up in a small township called Lefaragatlhe, Rustenburg, a place in which taking care of the family becomes the duty of the child aged twelve, or even younger, the odds were highly stacked against More, but he remained focused because his family was very supportive of his dreams. ‘My parents were supportive towards my running career but unfortunately God took them in 2010 and 2011, and now I stay with my 3 sisters who are very proud of me because of where I am (in life),’ said an emotional More. He would end up joining the athletics family in 2010 when he was 11 years old. ‘I started running in 2010 but I started taking it serious in 2014, and every year after my injury (in 2015) things has been going well.’
After another successful training camp in Kenya during the December holidays in 2017, he returned to South Africa highly motivated and ready to tackle a new phase in his life. Enrolled for a Sport Management Diploma at Vaal University Technology, the North-West born athlete completes seven training sessions per week- 3 hard and 4 easy- in pursuit of his dream of representing South Africa at the 2024 Olympic Games in Paris. His short term goals, in the meantime, ‘are to try and win the 800m and 1500m at the senior national champs in 2019.’
This young man has David Rudisha written all over him. Not in stature and body built, but in heart. His why is: ‘athletics is one of the sporting codes where you can constantly improve on being better than yesterday by working harder (and smarter) to be the best you can be.’
Written by Reggie Hufkie