Twenty-six year old Lungo Katete – who hails from Midrand in Gauteng – became the second Miss South Africa finalist to be voted out of Crown Chasers, the behind-the-scenes Miss South Africa television series which debuted last week on SABC 3.


In the first episode – in which viewers first got to meet the 12 Miss South Africa 2023 finalists – Lebohang Raputsoe from Sharpeville was eliminated from the running.


In episode 2, the remaining 11 contestants travelled to Mauritius where they were tasked with creating a travel vlog, given a beach challenge and had to participate in a swimwear photoshoot. They also got to meet Miss Universe Mauritius. Judges Bonang Matheba and Leandie du Randt, along with guest judge Vanessa Carreira Coutroulis, then evaluated the finalists’ performances at a networking event and judged their first official photoshoot, with Katete leaving at the end of the episode.


Winner of the episode was Natasha Joubert.


Says Katete: “Participating in Crown Chasers was an unforgettable experience. I met some of the most wonderful women in South Africa and was surrounded by such an amazing organisation who made this journey worthwhile.


“I always thought that the moment I would cherish the most along this journey would be when I was told me that I made it to the Top 12, but the journey got better and better with each passing day. We got to travel to the beautiful island of Mauritius and experience the people, the culture and shoot on a beautiful private which is a moment I will never forget.


“To be eliminated was the hard part, but if there is one thing I can guarantee it is that my journey does not stop here.”


Katete, who holds a Bachelor of Architectural Studies, Bachelor of Architectural Studies Honours and a Master of Architecture (Professional) Degree from the University of the Witwatersrand works as a candidate architect, describes her Miss South Africa journey thus: “It has been an unforgettable experience. For the longest time being the next Miss South Africa has always been a dream of mine. So to be granted the opportunity to live in that reality and be on this journey has been a dream come true and will always have a special place in my heart.”


How was it participating in Crown Chasers?


“Taking part in Crown Chasers was unforgettable, because the process is set up in such a way that you are challenged each week to allow you to grow and evolve and you learn so much about yourself. I met some of the most incredible women and was surrounded by an amazing organisation that made this journey worthwhile.”


Tell us about the challenges and what you found particularly difficult?


“Our very first challenge was to pack everything we needed to go to Mauritius in just 30 minutes and film the entire process to create a one minute packing video. Then just when we thought we could relax, our amazing host Zozibini Tunzi informed us that we would have to create a seven to 10 minute vlog of our time in Mauritius. As daunting as it was, my focus was to showcase Mauritius from my perspective and to show those watching who I am and what I am about. While in Mauritius we had an wonderful photoshoot; we were in a different country away from home which was a bit challenging but I always make sure I do my best in everything I do. On elimination day we had to strut our stuff in front of the judges. If there is one thing I can guarantee it is that my walk is an extension of who I am. It showcases not only my elegance but also my strength. So in that final challenge I made sure my presence was known!”


What is your message to the remaining Miss South Africa finalists?


“To my fellow contestants, it has been an honour and a privilege to meet you all and be on such an awesome journey with you. Always remember to be present and enjoy the journey. So often we get lost in the moment and forget to take in what’s going on around us. But it is important to allow yourself to stop and smell the roses along the way and enjoy it.”


What next for you?


“Right now my focus is on building the life I have always dreamt of, starting with my upcoming graduation to celebrate what I have been able to achieve this far and the dreams that are still to come.”


Do you have a message for your supporters?


“To all of those who have supported me along the way, I would like to take this moment to say thank you. Thank you for believing in me and for supporting me throughout this journey as I got to live a lifelong dream.”


Episode 3 of Crown Chasers – titled Down to Businesswill be broadcast on Sunday, July 23 at 16h00 on SABC 3. This episode showcases the importance of understanding business. Finalists are introduced to MoFaya energy drinks and asked to create their own innovative energy drink can. They are briefed alongside a teammate to build a business plan or marketing strategy for their specific product. The episode closes with another elimination leaving just nine finalists. Guest judge is Ntandose Mosibi.


Crown Chasers viewers and Miss South Africa fans are encouraged to vote for their favourite Crown Chaser via the official Miss South Africa App which can also be downloaded for free from the Apple App Store or Google Play Store. Voting is open from now until August 7 at 10h00.


Miss South Africa 2023 will be crowned at the SunBet Arena at Time Square in Pretoria on Sunday, August 13.


Miss South Africa is presented by Weil Entertainment in association with Sun International. SABC3 is the official broadcast partner. The sponsors for the Crown Chasers Mauritius episode were World Leisure Holidays, SunLife, Long Beach Resort, Ile Aux Cerfs, Sugar Beach Resort. The swimwear photoshoot is sponsored by Intuition South Africa with swimwear from Imbe by Miss South Africa 2020 Shudufhadzo Musida for the photoshoot while Imprint ZA is the runway designer sponsor.