Kirsten McCann made front page news by becoming the first South African woman to earn a rowing world championship title and being the first SA rower to secure a medal in a singles boat.
Kirsten McCann one of RowSA’s top female rowers made history by winning a gold medal at the recent World Rowing Championships in Sarasota, Florida. She became the first South African woman to earn a rowing world title, and the first SA rower to secure a medal in a singles boat at the global spectacle. Kirsten was also one of three finalists who battled it out for the coveted SA Sportswoman-of-the-Year Award for 2017.
Almost 10 years since making her debut at the Beijing Olympic Games, Kirsten is finally reaping the benefits of years of self-sacrifice and dedication. She was the first South African woman to win a medal at the Under-23 World Championships when she finished third in the lightweight single sculls in 2010. Three years later, she became the World Student champion, before breaking new ground winning the 2015 World Lightweight Double Sculls bronze medal with Ursula Grobler.
“My goal this year is to be as fast as humanly possible in the single scull, and that to me is to be faster than I’ve ever been.” – Kirsten McCann
Sandra Khumalo who despite being paralysed from the waist down, has found new legs in the form of a single scull rowing boat. She was the only para-rower from the National Squad who made it through the heats to an A-Final at this year’s World Rowing Championships in Sarasota, Florida. Even though she finished in fifth place it was no mean feat as it was the first time that the para-rowers had raced 2 000 metres – double the usual distance.
Sandra, a two-time Paralympian, completed the 2 000m race in 12:14.07, and though she finished more than 18 seconds outside a podium place, it was her best performance in four appearances at the global showpiece.
"The accident showed me that nothing is impossible – you can overcome any obstacle in your life and if you put your mind and heart to it, it will happen." – Sandra Khumalo
As the proud sponsor of our National Squad, RMB would like to salute these two phenomenal woman for shining on the international stage.