‘Speed Star’ Makhanya awarded with new car for winning Spar challenge

2013-11-12 14:32

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SA mid-distance specialist Mapaseka Makhanya has driven away in a brand new car following her exploits in the Spar Women’s Race Grand Prix.

The Central Gauteng Athletics runner amassed 105 points in the four-leg series that started in Cape Town in March.

Her victories came at the Durban and Pretoria legs.

She romped home in a record 33.37 minutes at the Pretoria meeting in August.

Makhanya, known as Speed Star, edged out pre-competition favourite and defending champion René Kalmer by 13 points to claim the grand prize of a new Nissan Micra.

Mapaseka Makhanya with the new Nissan Micra.

Kalmer has been the dominant force in the 10km event in recent years, having won it three times, but Makhanya managed to edge her out, her switch from the track to the road bringing the desired results.

Makhanya’s impressive form comes on the back of a season in which she opened with victory in both the 15 000m and 5 000m events at the SA Senior Championships in April.

She also went on to clinch another first place when she won the Gauteng Marathon on debut in September in a time of two hours and 38 minutes.

Even by her admission, it has been a great year on the road for the 28-year-old from Soweto.

“My aim was to be in the top three, but after the Durban race (in June) I had the spirit and the courage not to look back,” she said during the awards ceremony in Illovo, Johannesburg.

“I hope to do well again next year and win another car.”

The Spar Grand Prix may not be the end of accolades for Makhanya as she is also in the running for the SA Sportswoman and the Sports Star of the Year awards following her nominations in the SA Sports Awards, which will be held in Sun City on Sunday.

Three days later, Makhanya will find out if she will be crowned Spar gsport Athlete of the Year.

Mapaseka Makhanya holds her Spar Grand Prix award.

The Spar Grand Prix Top 10 (10km):

Mapaseka Makhanya (Transnet/Bonitas)

René Kalmer (Nedbank Running Club)

Christine Kalmer (Nedbank)

Irvette van Zyl (Nedbank)

Myrette Filmalter (Nedbank)

Lebo Phalula (Mixed Elite Central Gauteng)

Jenna Challenor (Boxer KZN)

Nolene Conrad (Nedbank) Cornelia Joubert (Nedbank)

Poppy Mlambo (Boxer Central Gauteng)

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