MEC notes fixture clash

2009-02-03 00:00

ANOTHER clash of fixtures resulted in coastal and midlands runners being split between two good races on Sunday, a situation highlighted by Sport and Recreation MEC Amichand Rajbansi in his address to around 700 participants at the Sparkport 32 km Challenge.

“We would like to congratulate the organisers and runners and walkers for this great turnout, despite KwaZulu-Natal Athletics permitting another race within 30 km of this event,” said Rajbansi. “But be assured we will meet with KZN Athletics to discuss [the clash].”

It was a point well made, given the impact on the level of competition, race organisation, growth of the sport and sponsors’ interests.

Both the 32 km and 16 km runners commenced simultaneously with Formula One’s Edwin Chimombo taking the early lead ahead of Collegians Harriers’ Muzi Makwe. Chimombo’s efforts opened over 500 metres in the first 10 km, but would all be in vain as the Zimbabwean had failed to renew his federation’s clearance to race in South Africa and was disqualified.

This opened the door for SAP Striders’ Geoffrey Ncgobo. He finished in 57 minutes and 26 seconds, just under 100 metres ahead of Nedbank’s Calvin Shabalala, whose club-mate, Stanley Makhamba, came third in 59 minutes and 18 seconds.

A demonstration of strong hill running gave Janine Carey a win in the single-lap race. Consistently opening the gap over Sandie de Beer, Carey had half-a-kilometre in hand when she won in one hour, six minutes and 26 seconds. Nedbank’s Hleziphi Ncanyani came third three minutes later.

In the 32 km double-lapper, Shinge Badza was the clear winner in 1:56,09. Mr Price’s Vusi Cele had the advantage in the final kilometre scramble between the next four athletes to take second, with Pietermaritzburg-based Muzi Makwe edging out Mr Price’s Nicholas Mjadu for third in 1:56,51.

Eskom Gijima’s Sibongile Ziqubu comfortably stamped her authority on the longer distance to cross the line in 2:27,41. Debbie Eaton of Collegians Harriers was never challenged for her second spot in 2:30,56.

A few kilometres up the Comrades route another 500 runners and walkers lined up for the equally challenging Kearsney Striders Dunlop Tyres half-marathon and 16 km walk, which was won by Mr Price’s Professor Mollen in 70 minutes and 52 seconds. Pietermaritzburg-based Sibonela Duma and Mollen’s clubmate, Sipho Ncube, finished in 72 minutes and 20 seconds, and 73 minutes and 19 seconds, respectively.

Although strung out over nine minutes, the Boxer club made a clean sweep of the women’s podium with Sibongile Mpanza taking line honours in 1:37,50. Iris Ndlovu filled second with Maria Mthembu third.

32 km Sparkport Challenge

Men’s Open: 1 Shinge Badza Boxer 1:56:09, 2 Vusi Cele MrP 1:56:48, 3 Muzi Makwe CH 1:56:51.

Team: Mr Price.

Women’s Open: 1 Sibongile Ziqubu Eskom 2:27:41, Debbie Eaton CH 2:30:56, 3 Nonsikelezo Mbambo RWFL 2:34:35.

Team: PDAC.

16 km Sparkport challenge:

Men’s Open: 1 Geoffrey Ngcobo SAPS strider, 57:26, 2 Calvin Shabalala Nedbank 57:44, 3 Stanley Makhamba Ned 59:18.

Walkers: 1 Abraham Mbhele Eskom 1:25:55, 2 Thamie Radebe RWFL 1:26:13, 3 Oxley Africa Boxer 1:28:38.

Women’s Open: 1 Janine Carey Boxer 66:26, 2 Sandie de Beer SANDF 68:40, 3 Hleziphi Ncanyani Nedbank 69:31.

Walkers: 1 Anne Mckenzie RWFL 1:54:06, 2 Antoinette Gibbs Highway 2:00:44, 3 Saras Wathie Chatsworth 2:01:47.

Kearsney Dunlop Tyres 21 km

Men’s Open: 1 Professor Mollen MrP 1:10:52, 2 Sibonelo Duma Boxer 1:12:20, 3 Sipho Ncube Mr P 1:13:19.

Team: Boxer.

Women’s Open: 1 Sibongile Mpanza Boxer 1:37:50, 2 Iris Ndlovu Boxer 1:43:14, 3 Maria Mthembu Boxer 1:46:25.

Team: Boxer.

16km WALK

Men’s Open: 1 Proffessor Cele RWFL 1:21:58, 2 Nonhlanhla Khanyile RWFL 1:31:46, 3 Roger McCarroll RWFL 1:50:10.

Women: 1 Khethiwe Memela Boxer 1:52:20, 2 Babongile Memela RWFL 1:52:42, 3 Lynne Pienaar QBH 1:58:19.

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