Sixteen years after winning the country’s first Olympic medal after South Africa’s readmission to international sport, Elana Meyer has been honoured for her contribution to sport and her achievements in distance running, in an extended career which saw her break a host of local and international records.
Popular online women’s sports initiative, gsport … for Girls! announced Meyer as its 2008 Hall of Fame inductee, at the 2nd Annual gsport Awards at the posh Westcliff Hotel this morning.
Meyer sent South Africa into wild celebrations back in 1992 when she came second to claim silver in the 10 000m event at the Barcelona Games, South Africa’s first Olympic Games since 1960.
“This is a truly special day for me. I still remember what it was like when I first started off in sport about 30 years ago. I was a shy young girl then and now I have grown into a confident woman.
“I am delighted to be the 2008 gsport Hall of Fame recipient. Thank you to gsport for what you are doing for women in sport.”
Since retiring from international competitive racing in 2005, Elana has focused on using her vast experience to add value to organizations and institutions.
In early 2007 she joined forces with the JAG Sports and Education Foundation and is responsible for the running of the Foundation and implementing education programs which promote physical health, emotional well-being and personal achievement in underserved communities.
gsport founder, Kass Naidoo, led the tributes to Meyer, saying “She is an icon who deserves to be lauded for years to come. Elana gave South Africans a sense of belonging when she won that Olympic medal in Barcelona. She is a true South African sporting hero”.
Also this morning, gsport announced its Four Leading Ladies of the Year, with Managing Director of Motorsport South Africa, Beaulah Schoeman, walking away with gsport’s Woman of the Year award.
Renelle Naidoo, a motorsport fanatic, and producer of SAfm’s week daily sports show, Gameplan, won gsport’s Woman in Media Award, the 2008 Personal Account Writer of the Year went to Mpho Makhoba, and popular model and actress, the super elegant Tanya van Graan, took top honours in the Style Star category.
Kommetjie surfing sensation, Tarryn Chudleigh, who is currently surfing in Portugal was named the 2008 gSTAR of the Year for her outstanding performances in the water, which has seen her climb the ranks of the women’s surfing world.
The gsport awards ceremony attracted big names in women’s sport, including gsport’s inaugural Hall of Fame inductee, international swimming icon Penny Heyns, last year’s Hall of Fame candidate, eighties netball phenomenon Hazel Gumede, top women’s soccer administrator, Fran Hilton-Smith, and former Banyana Banyana captain Desiree Ellis.
The gsport … for Girls! initiative was launched last August by South Africa’s first woman cricket commentator, Kass Naidoo, to raise the profile of women in sport and showcase vibrant South African women who serve as role models.
gsport publishes a monthly edition of Leading Ladies and Feature Articles, and a daily newsroom featuring breaking women’s sports news.
The 2008 gsport Award Winners
- Elana Meyer – 2008 Hall of Fame Inductee
- Tarryn Chudleigh – 2008 Athlete of the Year
- Beaulah Schoeman – 2008 Woman of the Year
- Renelle Naidoo – 2008 Woman in Media
- Tanya van Graan – 2008 Style Star Award
- Mpho Makhoba – 2008 Personal Account Writer of the Year
- Bronwyn Chudleigh – 2008 Volunteer of the Year
Photo 1 Caption: Elana Meyer speaks after being unveiled the 2008 gsport Hall of Fame Inductee, at the Westcliff Hotel in Johannesburg on 1 August, 2008. Photo: gsport
Photo 2 Caption: Beaulah Schoeman (left) acknowledges the media after being named gsport’s 2008 Woman of the Year, in the company of Gwen Gill. Photo: gsport
Photo 3 Caption: 2008 Style Star Award winner Tanya van Graan had a dedicated voting team supporting her nomination, and their efforts paid off as she walked away with the year’s honours. Photo: gsport