Maritzburg Marathon this weekend

2012-02-23 00:00

KWAZULU-NATALS Siyabonga Nko-nde won Sunday’s Livestrong Austin half-marathon, leaving a field of over 10 000 runners in his wake. Nkonde was one second short of having a three-minute lead over second placed David Feuntes, with Californian Cheyne Inman closing the podium.

The athlete was invited to the race following Sipho Ncgongo’s third-place finish in the 2011 Austin marathon, and this time accompanied Ncgongo, who dropped to seventh in 2:31,45. Edward Kiptum won the race in 2:22,50, with Shannon Bixler leading the women home in 3:02,28.

In a comparison of the stats, the race attracted 3 878 runners, with 30% of the field women and an overall average finishing time of 4:29,19.

Nkonde was originally planning to compete in the SA cross-country trials held in Potchefstroom, but when the American invitation arrived, he did not hesitate to accept it. Elroy Gelant earned an upset victory in Saturday’s SA cross-country trials in Potchefstroom, opening an 80-metre lead on second-placed David Manja.

The Phalula twins dominated the senior women’s eight-kilometre race from the gun, with only Nolene Conrad sharing the lead. Lebogang Phalula, went into the last lap with over 150 metres in hand at the line. Sister and defending champion Lebo Phalula came third, behind Mpho Mabuza.

Samuel Pazanga was the best of the field at Zabalaza’s Assmag half-marathon.

Suzette Botha provided one of the performances of the weekend when she won the Old Mutual Battlefields marathon. The athlete was the third runner over the line, with only Justice Nkosi and Thoko Gaza able to keep ahead of her.

With over 3 900 runners, the Weekend Witness Maritzburg Marathon is the largest event on the local calendar, and the feature event of this weekend. As the most popular Two Oceans and Comrades qualifier for the past three years, over 70% of the entrants will take on the two-lap 42-kilometre distance, while over 1 000 will turn into the Drill Hall finish after completing the first lap.

Tanith Maxwell is the leading athlete in the half-marathon, while American Emily Field is one of the characters among the marathoners. Field has already run 50 marathons in 50 days, and can be expected to be among the category awards.

In a historic move, the official Marathon Flame from Greece arrived in Durban this week, and will make its way to Pietermaritzburg.

Runners and the public are encouraged to see the torch as it is run up the very old Comrades route today. Sunday’s race is totally pre-entry, with no entries taken on race day. Inquiries: John Hall at 082 491 7679.

The Jabulani Club is host for the annual DB Enterprises 10-kilometre run and walk, which is held from Fitty Park sports ground in Ladysmith on Sunday at 10 am. The event is open to both runners and walkers, and a five-kilometre fun run will be held for younger participants. Inquiries: Digby Shabangu at 084 640 1213.

The fifth track-and-field league will be held at Kings Park on Saturday, commencing at 9.30 am. For more information, phone 031 312 9374.

Entries for both the KZN seniors and masters championships (March 17 and March 18), and the youth and junior championships (March 9 and March 10) are now open. In order to qualify for an entry to the championships, you should take part in at least two leagues. The closing dates for the entries are March 2 for the youth and juniors, and March 9 for seniors and masters.

RESULTS:

SA cross-country trials: senior men: 1 Elroy Gelanta 00:34,49; 2 David Manja 00:35,01; 3 Boy Sokea 00:35,06.

Senior women: 1 Lebo Phalula 00:27,08; 2 Mpho Mabuza 00:27,37; 3 Lebogang Phalula 00:28,10; Zalabala Assmag Half marathon: men: 1 Samuel Pazanga Mr Price A C 67:53; 2 Manyarazi Jari IND68:58; 3 Shingie BudzaForm One A C 72:36. Women: 1 Sindi JaliEscom Gijimas 94:53; 2 Erica WalkerHilton Harr 95:24; 3 Sibongile ZiqubuEscom Gijimas 98:03.

10-kilometre walk: men: Abraham Mbhele Matubatuba 56:21. Women: Antonette GibbsHighway A 67:17.

Old Mutual/Newcastle Harriers five in one:

10-kilometre: men: 1 Dereck Volksrust 36:19; 2 Xolani Msimango Volksrust 38:56; 3 M. Mbaso 45:55.

Women: 1 Tanith Maxwell 36:56; 2 Thobeka Zondo 44:45;

3 Xoli Madida 45:55.

21,1-kilometre: men: 1 Mtshuli Mlungisi 1:15,22; 2 Bingani Bigg 1:20,47; 3 Sandile Khulu 1:21,38.

Woomen: 1 Ingrid Kriel 1:46,47; 2 Tumi Monare 1:48,22;

3 Veronica van Niekerk 1:59,01.

42,2 kilometre: men: 1 Justice Nkosi 2:42,27; 2 Thoko Gaza 2:56,24; 3 Bheki Nqoba 3:02,01. Women: 1 Suzette Botha 2:56,48; 2 Paula Quinsere 3:23,13; 3 Ann Erasmus 3:49,07.

50 kilometre: men: 1 Mdumeseni Zondi 3:29,16; 2 Lincoln Sibiya 3:31,30; 3 Johannes Maseka 3:34,21. Women:

1 Nonsikelelo Mbambo 4:30,54; 2 Zukiswa Khulu 5:43,12.

Austin half-marathon: men: 1 Siyabonga Nkonde 1:04,58; 2 David Fuentes1:07,57; 3 Cheyne Inman 1:08,47. Women: 1 Allison Mendez 1:18,14; 2 Hellen Rotich 1:20:,37; 3 Sarah Deller 1:25,40.

Marathon: men: 1 Edward Kiptum 2:22,50; 2 Jynocel Basweti 2:23,52; 3 Bartosz Mazerski 2:25,55. Women:

1 Shannon Bixler 3:02,28; 2 Inna Vishik 3:08,51; 3 Pia-Maria Molin 3:08,51.

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