The International Cycling Union (UCI) and the International Olympics Committee (IOC) have officially confirmed local cycling ace Tristan de Lange as replacement for veteran cyclist Dan Craven, who withdrew from the Tokyo Olympics after testing positive for Covid-19.
Secretary general of the Namibia National Olympic Committee (NNOC) Joan Smit yesterday told New Era Sport that De Lange finally got the green light from the two international bodies to enter the Tokyo Olympics as a wildcard.
“Yes, Tristan was confirmed. In fact, he is already here in Japan with us, and is set to compete this coming weekend in the men’s road race events,” said Smit from Team Namibia’s Japanese base.
She also shared that Namibian rower Maike Diekmann will be the country’s first athlete to compete on the opening day of the Olympics this Friday, followed by De Lange on Saturday and then Vera Looser (née Adrian) on Sunday in the women’s road cycling race.
In total, Namibia will be represented by 11 athletes, seven coaches, two mechanics (for the bicycles), one doctor, one physiotherapist and three officials. The other athletes are boxer Jonas Jonas, sprinters Beatrice Masilingi and Christine Mboma, marathon runners Helalia Johannes and Rainhold Tomas, swimmer Phillip Seidler and mountain bikers Alex Miller and Michelle Vorster.