Walmer Sun reporter
ST DOMINIC’S Priory Grade 8 pupil Payton Horton overcame a spate of injuries to win nine medals (six individual and three team) at the recent Cana Zone 3 & 4 swimming championships in Zambia.
Payton, who was the recipient of her school’s sport star of the week award on her return, achieved seven personal bests while swimming at an altitude of 1200m.
The 12-year-old was the leading South African swimmer at the event, having collected the most medals and points for the team.
Payton has been plagued by injuries this season. She broke her ankle on the tennis court in August last year. After months of physiotherapy with biokineticist Ric Lindsay, she was 95% of the way to recovery when she suffered bleeding in the tendons during a Nipper surf life-saving session. This resulted in more physiotherapy. She has been involved in the sport since she was eight, having been encouraged to take up the sport by her coach, Chris Stottelaar.
“Chris has brought my swimming from nowhere to where I am now. I couldn’t have done it without Chris and Ric’s help,” Payton said.
“The biggest help in my career has been my family and their support, my coach and my biokineticist, who helped me through a season of injuries,” she said.
Payton’s individual results in Zambia were: gold in 200m freestyle, 100m freestyle; silver in 100m butterfly; bronze in 50m freestyle, 50m butterfly and 400m freestyle.