Check out all the latest news and important info from the world’s biggest, oldest and most famous ultra, the Comrades Marathon. – BY DELAINE COOLS & THAMI VILAKAZI
HUGE ECONOMIC IMPACT IN 2016
Tourism KwaZulu-Natal has finalised its economic impact assessment of the 2016 Comrades Marathon, and the 91st edition of the world’s biggest and oldest ultra-marathon’s economic footprint on the KwaZulu-Natal region stands at more than R605-million!
CMA General Manager, Chris Fisher says, “The Comrades Marathon gives back to the communities in which it operates, to the Cities of Durban and Pietermaritzburg as well as the greater region of KZN. The Comrades Marathon as an event, has the single largest impact on the province of KZN by far. We are thankful to Tourism KwaZulu-Natal for the immense amount of work that they have put into the comprehensive economic impact report for our race this year.”
COMRADES PERCEPTION SURVEY
The CMA would like to thank the 3337 runners who responded to the 2016 Comrades Perception Survey. The results will be shared with our runners soon.
COMRADES HISTORY ALIVE & WELL
From novices to Quadruple Green Number holders, the new Comrades Museum has something guaranteed to peak your interest. Over 90 years of history has been encapsulated in a manner that brings the race and its heroes to life. Decade by decade, the story of the race’s progression is tied in beautifully with physical displays on the evolution of running apparel. The new exhibition has sourced never before seen items of Comrades memorabilia and combined it with the stories of runners and the race itself, encapsulating the essence that makes it The Ultimate Human Race.
DIARISE IT: 4 JUNE 2017
The 92nd Comrades Marathon will take place on Sunday 4 June 2017. It will be the 47th Up-run in Comrades history and will therefore once again start outside the Durban City Hall. Looking still further ahead, you can also pencil the 2018 race date into your calendar so long, as the date has been finalised: The 93rd edition of the Comrades will take place on Sunday 10 June. (The CMA has taken the decision to permanently position the race on the second Sunday of June, from 2018 onwards. It will still be on the first weekend in 2017 due to there already being several other large events in the KZN area on that second weekend.)
GET YOUR 2017 TRAINING PROGRAMME
The official Comrades Marathon Coach, Lindsey Parry, has devised a comprehensive training programme to get you on the start line of the 2017 Ultimate Human Race and to achieve your coveted Comrades medal. Follow this link to access the much-needed information and training tips: www.comrades.com.
WALL OF HONOUR GIFT IDEA
Why not give a gift of love to the Comrades runner in your family this Christmas? Over the years, this treasured Comrades memento has become a sought-after gift for Christmas and birthdays. And you can beat the Christmas rush by ordering a Comrades Wall of Honour plaque for your loved one today. Please contact email@example.com for more info.
MY COMRADES STORY:
TIME TO FIND A FRIEND
BY JACOB MASIMLA
“I was running my 20th Comrades Marathon this year. I was not well trained, but managed to get through halfway in a sub-5:30. My goal was to finish in 11 hours. After halfway my knees gave in and I felt that one of my feet was getting sore. I then started cramping in my right leg and was forced to put more pressure on my left leg, until my left knee was overworked from all the pressure. I then tried to balance my weight in a way where I didn’t feel the pain so heavily on the one knee.
As I was running I met Piet Boesak, a long-time Comrades friend of mine, with the same problem. He was so happy to see me that he even forgot about his own injury. We there and then strategised on how we will take on the next half of our Comrades journey, and we started by identifying who will call when to run and when to stop.
On top of Cowies Hill I started getting light-headed, so I told my friend to carry on and that I will catch up with him. Normally when I get dizzy, it is the time when I know that I have to use the loo, and after 10 minutes I recovered. Back on the road I saw another runner with the same problem as mine and recommended that he go to the loo as well. As I hit the 3km to go marker, I stopped running, as I realised that I had one hour left. That’s when I told myself that I will walk the remaining distance. I finally finished the race ten minutes before the cut-off time, which also turned out to be the finishing time for my friend.”
SHARE YOUR COMRADES MARATHON STORY
Every person has a story to tell and Comrades Marathon runners in particular have the ultimate tales of courage, perseverance and endurance. We are calling on ardent Comrades runners to inspire the nation to take up the challenge of running the world’s most gruelling footrace, by sending us your Comrades Story in 300 words or less, and stand the chance to win a Comrades hamper. Please e-mail your story to firstname.lastname@example.org.
CSI NEWS UPDATE
The Comrades Marathon makes a positive difference to the lives of the less fortunate around us by supporting six official Comrades Charities, and runners are invited to support these charities through the Amabeadibeadi and Race4Charity initiatives.
GREATHEARTS ROCKED 2016 COMRADES
A message of thanks from the Starfish Charity: “Yay, what an amazing campaign Starfish had this year. A job well done by the 87 Greathearts who ran the 2016 Comrades Marathon in support of Starfish. Enthused to make a difference, they raised an amazing R670,000, having exceeded the fundraising target even before race day. Your efforts are appreciated! A special thanks to all the Starfish supporters and sponsors for making this event a huge success. To Roxanne and the CMA team, Nedbank for hosting our children, to Busby for providing 120 branded caps for the runners and children, and to the little cheerleading Greathearts from Ethembeni School.”
COMMUNITY CHEST HAILS NONTUTHUKO
“Comrades runner and Community Chest Comrades Ambassador Nontuthuko Mashimane is seen here at Masakhane Creche, having fun with some of the children she fundraised for by supporting by the Community Chest of Pietermaritzburg. She raised over R50,000 in her fundraising efforts for the Race4Charity initiative at the 2016 Comrades Marathon, and says she would like to encourage and inspire other runners who run the Comrades Marathon to run for the Community Chest, and together make the 2017 Comrades a life-changing experience, not only for themselves but for the early childhood children.”
To find out more about how you can make a difference, go to www.comrades.com/charities/amabeadibeadi or www.comrades.com/charities/race-4-charity
COMRADES MARATHON ONLINE