The INSPIRING STORY of Lorinda – a beacon of hope at S4J at Triple Challenge

Actually how God used every person in this story was inspirational. Yet when it REALLY mattered, this woman’s courageous heart encouraged a remarkable breakthrough on an amazing journey.

The THREE men, Shane van Dam, Louis Malan and Gavin Pansegrouw at the start to run THREE marathons in 30 hours at THREE different venues.

Last year Gavin Pansegrouw contacted Norman at the S4J office with the idea of doing the Triple Challenge as a fundraiser for S4J. By now it is HISTORY…the S4J at Triple Challenge happened and exceeded expectations as a fundraiser for the Water for Sudan project that forms part of the S4J.

The S4J at Triple Challenge consisted of a TEAM of athletes, running THREE marathons at THREE different venues, in 30 hours. These marathons were 1) Wonderpark Akasia Marathon on the Saturday morning 2) Ottosdal Nite Race (marathon) on the Saturday afternoon / evening, and 3) Johnson Crane Hire Marathon on the Sunday morning.

There were THREE athletes that signed up for the THREE marathons, i.e. Gavin Pansegrouw, Louis Malan and Shane van Dam. The rest of the team consisted of Gavin’s parents Jake (driver for the journey) and Christine, Lorinda Engelbrecht (Gavin’s girl-friend), Vanessa Malan and Norman Johnson (from the S4J office).

The team gathered at Gavin’s residence in Randfontein on the Friday, ready to get up at 2:00 on the Saturday morning to travel to the Wonderpark Akasia Marathon on the Saturday morning. The race had a huge attendance and was exciting to experience as the FIRST leg of the S4J at Triple Challenge.

After the Wonderpark Akasia Marathon: the group consisted of Shane van Dam, Louis & Vanessa Malan, Norman Johnson, Jake and Christine Pansegouw, Gavin Pansegrouw and Lorinda Engelbrecht.

After the race, the team moved on to Ottosdal Nite Race. We arrived on a lovely sunny afternoon, meeting up with quite a number of other S4J athletes, friends and acquaintances. Shortly after the marathon started, an incredible storm brewed with strong winds, rain and thunder. Afterwards Gavin shared that at times he was really concerned for their safety.

S4J at Triple Challange team seeting up camp at the venue at Ottosdal.
Group foto withLorinda Engelbrect, Jan & Benita Coetzee from Warden, Gavin Pansegrouw, Jaco de Jager, Norman Johnson, Shane van Dam and Louis Malan.

Lorinda also joined the S4J at Triple challenge team during this race. The support team waited for the athletes in soaking rain.

It was amazing to await Gavin and Lorinda at the finish line. For Lorinda to have finished this marathon in these harsh conditions with a personal best time, was just phenomenal.

Lorinda completing the Ottosdal Nite race in a personal best time for her for a marathon.
Gavin and Lorinda extremely happy about having a wonderful run in extreme conditions.

Right then, things turned to the DRAMATIC side. What seemed like hours, with everybody now EXHAUSTED, we were driving through non stop rain. The alternator of the kombi were giving problems resulting that we could not drive this almost 300 km journey faster than 60 km per hour.

This seemed like a disaster. Where the whole team we’re supposed to move straight to Benoni for the Johnson Crane Hire Marathon, the proverbial wheels seemed to have come off. It seemed that we had to travel all the way back to Gavin’s residence in Randfontein and that the THIRD of the marathons of the S4J at Triple Challenge were just NOT going to happen.

It was right then that Lorinda about 2 am in the morning made this BOLD statement. “We SAID that we would do ALL THREE marathons…therefor we WILL run all three marathons!” By the time we got to Gavin’s residence, a DECISION had to be made. It  was this: THREE of the team: Gavin, Lorinda and Norman got into Gavin’s car, head of to Benoni and were in time for the Johnson Crane Marathon.

The LAST man standing…


Gavin ran and completed the marathon. What bravery of these two love-birds (Gavin and Lorinda) to have seen out the journey. What an amazing privilege to have been with them ALL the way.

Lorinda still tired the next morning after having ran the Ottosdal Marathon the previous evening and then during right through the night to the Johnson Crane Marathon. Yet her loyalty to Gavin and the S4J just beyond description.
We did it! Praise you Jesus. Gavin and Lorinda in high spirits after the S4J at Triple Challenge was successfully completed.

One other S4J athlete, Jaco de Jager, al ran all three of the marathons that formed part of the S4J at Triple Challenge, but that story needs to be told in another article.

The S4J at Triple Challenge fundraiser for Water for Sudan.

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