Port Elizabeth - CEO by day, Ironman in the early mornings, after work and on weekends.
This can be said of Isuzu Motors South Africa Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director Michael Sacke, who will be participating in the upcoming Isuzu IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship, taking place on 1 and 2 September in Port Elizabeth.
While he has competed in five Ironman 70.3 races, it will be his first 70.3 World Championship. He also has three full Ironman and numerous shorter triathlons under his belt.
Sacke is an avid sportsman who played hockey for many years, participating in 10 senior men’s interprovincial tournaments. He also coached the Eastern Province hockey team who became national champions in 2002 and 2003. He was assistant coach to the South African Men’s Hockey team who qualified for the 2004 Olympics.
While his only involvement in hockey nowadays is to watch his daughters play, a few years back he was looking for a sport to regain his fitness. The Ironman bug bit after Sacke had watched the competition for a few years and decided to give it a try. He finished his first Ironman 70.3 in 2014 and full Ironman in 2015.
In balancing the rigorous training required to participate in triathlons with a demanding career at the head of one of the biggest vehicle manufacturers in the country, Sacke occasionally had to miss training sessions when travelling away from home. However, he has been training for six months for the upcoming Isuzu IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship.
“I generally do two sessions per day (early mornings and evenings after work) and longer sessions on the weekend. I am lucky to belong to a great triathlon club and we build a lot of camaraderie between the club’s members whether they are very strong athletes going for podium positions or just wanting to finish. Races are always a great experience, with participants and spectators providing great support during the race,” said Sacke.
Isuzu Motors South Africa is the headline sponsor for the upcoming IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship, which is expected to draw crowds of 50 000-plus spectators cheering the athletes from all over the world during the two days of racing in the Friendly City.
“It is fantastic that Isuzu Motors South Africa is involved in a world class event which will be broadcasted around the world. It is an opportunity to showcase our city, our people and our brand and products and it will be a very proud day for our new company,” said Sacke.