2017 FNB Dusi Canoe
Scientific approach hoping to help Houston’s Dusi charge
Pietermaritzburg – As the rains start to make a decided difference to river
levels across KwaZulu-Natal, paddlers from all over are honing their skills
during a busy few month period with FNB Dusi Canoe Marathon podium contender
Andrew Houston sharpening up his preparations as he builds towards the tough
K1 Dusi outing from 16-18 February.
The Euro Steel star has been mixing it up with the big boys of the river
marathon scene for a few seasons and realised that he was able to compete
with the best if he prioritised his preparation and took a more clinical
look at how he built up for races.
“When I was younger I didn’t really put a lot of effort into preparing for
races and it would mean that I didn’t understand why I was so tired!” the
laid back KZN Midlands local mentioned.
“Bianca (Haw) has had a coach that has been helping her with her training on
her bike and I have been using those elements to help me in my preparation.
There has been a really serious mindset shift from me and I am working
really hard towards the Dusi.”
Houston, who finished fifth in the last K1 Dusi in 2015, has been hampered
by illness recently and having been under the weather for the better part of
three weeks his training regime would have taken quite a severe hit.
“I definitely had an eye on getting a podium this year at the Dusi but after
getting sick towards the end of last year I think that a top five will be a
more reasonable goal.
“My allergies cause a lot of problems for me this time of year but it didn’t
help that I picked up a virus doing a mountain bike race in the Western Cape
last year and that set me back a lot but I am back to full strength and
training hard,” added a resurgent Houston.
With a naturally laid back demeanour, Houston is still in the process of
wrapping his head around how he is going to go about taking on the best
paddlers in the country at the Dusi in late February but isn’t losing too
much sleep over it.
“I haven’t put too much thought into my tactics yet but one thing that I am
going to do this year is not get too caught up in the action at the front of
“The top guys are going to go out really hard so I want to make sure that I
don’t overdo the first day. It is the toughest day of the race for me and
the portages are really punishing so I want to make sure that I am still in
good shape going into the final two days,” he added.
As the Dusi approaches paddlers are scrambling for seeding points which will
give them an advantage come the 16th of February and despite having not
paddled on the Msundusi River yet, Houston isn’t feeling the pressure too
“I try and stay off the Dusi River for as long as possible as I am quite
prone to illness so I am putting a bit of pressure on myself when it comes
to getting some seeding points.
“The Hi-Q Challenge is the day after Bianca’s 21st birthday so I think I am
going to have to focus my efforts on the Campbell’s to Dusi Bridge as a race
to gain seeding points!
“I am currently up in Underberg and focusing on the N3TC Drak Challenge so I
will start directing my attention to the Dusi after that,” Houston
information can be found at www.dusi.co.za
Click to download the hi-res
FNB Dusi Canoe Marathon logo (Landscape) - GIF
FNB Dusi Canoe Marathon logo
(Portrait) - GIF
Following his strong fifth
place finish at the 2015 FNB Dusi Canoe Marathon, Euro Steel's Andrew
Houston is hoping that a more clinical approach to the race will help him
replicate, if not better his last K1 result at the three-day adventure
from 16-18 February.
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