For a decade, Janice Josephs has dedicated her life to athletics and her dedication to excellence is finally paying off.
Janice is eyeing a gold medal at the 2008 Beijing Olympics and there is no reason why she shouldn’t achieve it considering the major strides she has made in her career in recent times.
A few years ago, Janice almost quit the sport because of injury and a lack of sponsorship, but in 2002, she met coach William Banks, who was so impressed by her potential that he decided to sponsor her himself.
Her partnership with Banks paid off almost immediately as she won double Gold at the South African Championships in 2003.
Five years later, Janice is a more confident athlete, especially having won her first major international title at the 2006 Africa Championships in the heptathlon.
Introducing a real track & field success story: Janice Josephs, back in action during the past weekend in the first Yellow Pages Athletics meet of the year.
Date and Place of Birth?
1 March 1982, in Retreat, Cape Town.
Favourite South African destination?
Where in South Africa are you based, and why?
I’m based in Cape Town, because of the great weather!
How long have you been competing in athletics?
How did you get into it?
What makes you keep on doing it?
My love for it!
Is it an expensive or inexpensive hobby?
It’s not a hobby, it’s my profession!
Does your sport promote inclusion of women from historically disadvantaged communities / backgrounds?
Yes, it does.
When you’re not out on the track, what is the trigger that compels you to get back?
You just know.
What is the most important safety tip(s) for a sprinter / hurdler?
Be fit, and stretch before you run.
What is your greatest achievement?
Going to the Olympic Games.
What are your future ambitions in athletics?
To win an Olympic medal.
What is your current form like?
What do you think of Yellow Pages coming in as a new sponsor of Athletics in South Africa?
I think it’s great, and very exciting.
What are the upcoming events over the summer season that you’re preparing for?
Long jump, hurdles and heptathlon.
What is the usual response to you as a girl in your sport?
There’s no real comment, because athletics is an integrated mixed sport.
Is it worth your while financially / can you make a living out of it?
I can say yes and no, particularly if the sponsor just pulls out for no reason…
What does it mean to be a woman in today’s times?
I don’t know.
Who is your favourite celebrity?
Top-ranked American sprint athlete Tyson Gay, who is thought to be the world’s fastest bend runner in relay and the 200m.
Who is your favourite female sports star?
Swedish athlete Carolina Kluft, an Olympic, world and European heptathlon champion.
Have you had much opportunity to travel the world doing your sport?
What do you miss most about your home town / South Africa when you’re out of town / country?
How do you stay in shape?
Easy! I’m always active.
What physical activity would you NEVER consider, and why?
Do you follow a diet?
How easy is it for women to make healthy lifestyle choices these days?
How do you go about finding sponsors?
Who are your sponsors?
What do you do for a job?
I’m a receptionist.
gsport’s February theme is ‘Love’: What does Love mean to you?
A lot, if you have the right guy!
Are you married, or involved?
Not at the moment.
What is the one thing that makes you proud to be South African?