WATCH: Morningside athlete takes top spot at SA champs
DURBAN - It has been an enthralling week for Morningside athlete, Mark Gaines.
He flew the Durban flag high at the SA Championships in Paarl recently, having won the Under 20 long jump and securing fourth place in his first ever SA Champs 100-metre final.
The 18-year-old athlete has been training for two years and only recently started focusing on 100m sprints and long jump.
He has had personal bests of 10.50s in 100m and 7.65 in the long jump and competes for the University of KwaZulu-Natal.
Speaking following his impressive feat, Gaines said he felt good going into the season.
"So far it's been good. I came into the season expecting to fix my flaws. I trained but not for the 100m and long jump. Within two months, I have come a long way. This means progress has been made. So that's good. I think I have the right coach to take me further in athletics,” he said.
Gaines said he believed in mental preparation more than physical preparation.
“I do not overthink and I do not go into events with the expectation of winning or losing. I believe if it is meant to be then it is meant to be. I do have a lot to work on and believe I will improve,” Gaines said.
Gaines's coach, Wade Fraser, said Gaines is extremely talented.
"He is deserving of this accolade. I am really proud of him and wish him everything of the best going forward," he said.