Promising young sprinter is back on track

Robyn Haupt, right, goes head-to-head with training partner Ethan Noble at the Bellville Velodrome.

Former De Kuilen High School pupil, Robyn Haupt, 21, will be looking to start her athletics season off with a bang, when she takes part in the Western Province League One meeting, on Wednesday February 8, at the Parow athletics track.

Haupt, from Blue Downs, who has been preparing for the upcoming season since last May, had a setback after she picked up a foot injury but that did not dampen her spirits.

She has been back at training since the start of the year and is on a mission to better her performance of last year and bring home the gold medal.

This comes after she took gold and silver in the 200m and 100m, respectively, at the Athletics South Africa (ASA) under-23 championships, in Johannesburg, early last year.

She also went on to make the finals and semi-finals of the 100m and 200m respectively, at the ASA senior championships, in Stellenbosch.

“It was a great experience to run against Carina Horne at the senior champs, who took part in last year’s Olympics,” she said.

This comes as no surprise as the former Palm Park Primary School pupil came fourth in her heat, in the 200m sprint, at the World Junior Championships, in the USA, in 2014.

A year later, she came fourth in the 200m final of the African Junior Championships, in Ethiopia.

“When I got to high school I realised I wanted to be a professional athlete and that was when my athletics career took flight.

“In 2012, I medaled at my first SA Junior Championships, coming second in triple jump and made my first 200m final,” said Haupt, who will now compete in the senior category as from this year there won’t be an under-23 section

“I have been competing in a few senior level events for the past four years with SA’s top athletes.

“I feel that this has made me mentally strong, so I am expecting nothing less than making it to finals and walking away with a few medals,” she said.

Haupt, a member of Bellville athletics club, looks up to those athletes who are committed at training and on competition day.

“I look up to these athletes because you find so many talented athletes who just throw it all away, and those who do not have the talent have to work so much harder just to achieve their dreams,” said Haupt. She credits her mother Natashia and coach Alroy Dixon for helping her become a more successful athlete.

“My mother was the one who always pushed me into doing athletics when I was Grade 2.

“I never liked the sound of the starter’s gun and how nervous it made me to compete against so many talented athletes.

“Also, my coach has brought me this far and he never stopped believing in me, that makes a big difference for any athlete,” she said

Robyn’s short-term goal is to win a gold medal in the 200m sprint at the SA senior champs and to qualify for the 2018 Commonwealth Games, in Australia.

“My long-term goal is to have the best 2020. To graduate from my degree in law and to qualify for the 2020 Olympics,” she said.