Ozzie Gladwin Canoe
Len Jenkins aims for tenth Ozzie Gladwin title
Pietermaritzburg - Len Jenkins is aiming to win his tenth title in The
Unlimited Ozzie Gladwin on Sunday 11 November and extend his uncanny
record over the 26km paddling and portaging classic at Albert Falls Dam.
Coming off the back of an imperious sixth successive victory in the Hansa
Fish SA K1 champs in Cradock Jenkins has the base and the form, and has
confirmed he will be out to contest the 2012 title after turning his back
on plans to travel to Hong Kong for the annual Dragon Run surfski race.
Jenkins has won The Unlimited Ozzie Gladwin nine times, seven of them in
the past decade, and has an uncanny knack for mastering this race which
comes very early on in the summer season and peaks with The Unlimited Dusi
from 14 to 16 February 2013..
"The trick is to make sure you don't lose too much time to the runners,"
said Jenkins. "In the Ozzie that means getting off the dam first with as
much of a lead as possible, and then running the portage around the dam
wall hard, hopefully so that the runners don't overtake you."
When pressed for who he saw as the "runners" there was no hesitation from
Jenkins. "Bungee," he said simply, referring to Dusi icon Thulani Mbanjwa
by his popular nickname. "Actually it could be Bungee or any one of the
guys who train with him in the valley because they are all brilliant
True to form Jenkins was non-committal about longer term plans and
targeting The Unlimited Dusi, but said that The Unlimited Ozzie Gladwin
was a key kick starter to the preparations for the Dusi season ahead.
"The distance is just right at this stage in the season. It is a hard hour
and a half with only the one portage to worry about," said Jenkins. "It's
a race you can get away with if you haven't been doing any running, and
the race distance adds up to a nice bit training."
That strategy was enough to earn Jenkins a lucrative victory in the NCC
Development Race, the first Dusi seeding race of the KZN season on the
weekend, which included a tough run up the Campbell's Farm portage to the
finish at Bishopstowe Hall on the top of the hill.
"That was tough but luckily I had done enough on the water to stay ahead
of Andy Birkett and Bungee," said Jenkins.
Jenkins' record on The Unlimited Ozzie Gladwin speaks for itself, and he
will start as a clear favourite to become the first paddler in the history
of the race to bag ten titles, half of them in K1 championship years.
"It's a fun race, especially the last few kays below where most of the
Upper Umgeni races finish," said Jenkins. "Hopefully with all the rains
the river will be really full. That will make it good fun and a bit faster
The Unlimited Ozzie Gladwin is South Africa's biggest one day canoeing
race, and takes place on Sunday 11 November. It is the second local
seeding race for The Unlimited Dusi in February and starts with a lap on
Albert Falls dam which leads to a 1km portage around the dam wall down to
the Upper Umgeni river and finishes at Thornvale Farm, completing a
total distance of 28km.
More information can be found at
Click to download the hi-res
Ozzie Gladwin Canoe Marathon 2012 Logo - JPeg
Len Jenkins is aiming to become the first
person to win ten titles in The Unlimited Ozzie Gladwin on Sunday 11
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