Yellow Pages signs with ASA again

2010-01-15 00:00

THE track-and-field season opened with good news on Wednesday this week when Athletics South Africa (ASA) was able to confirm the return of sponsors Yellow Pages for the 2010 to 2012 series.

Yellow Pages was reassured during its attendance at the interim board meeting on Tuesday and the contract was finalised and announced on Wednesday. This ensures the season will commence in Port Elizabeth on February 19 and then move to Durban on February 26.

There are six events in the series and the contract covers the senior, junior and student National Championships. The Senior Championships will also be held in Durban on March 19 and 20.

Although discussions continue with Nedbank, there is no clarity on what will be happening with the road-running sponsors, who cut short their contract for the Matha Marathon series in October. The national fixture list issued by Athetics South Africa no longer shows the Durban Marathon, which was scheduled for February 7.

A restructuring of the federation, however, which included the suspension of ASA president Leonard­ Chuene and his board, seems to have settled doubts the sponsors had held about administrative issues within the federation. The disciplinary hearings for suspended members are expected to commence this month.

Provincially, the track-and-field season commences tomorrow at King’s Park track with the Youth Junior Senior League meeting. The first event is at 9.30 am, with a programme that extends to 4.40 pm.

Each league meeting this season will have either a 3 000-metre or a 5 000 m race to run, as well as a 5 000 m walk. The KwaZulu-Natal Athletics Senior and Masters Championships will have the 5 000 m night walk on February 12, with the 10 km and 20 km walks the next morning­.

The Seniors and Masters 10 000 m Championship will be held on January 30 at approximately 3.30 pm, but entries must be sent to the office (attention Gugu) by January 28 as there will be no entries accepted on the day.

Masters competitions are held in five-year age groups for all runners from 35 years and upwards. The KZNA office has details of all the league programmes at 031 312 9374.

There are two road races this weekend.

The Scottburgh Club have changed the start and route of their annual half-marathon to one they claim will be more scenic­.

The race now starts from the Scottburgh main beach and runs up to Umkomaas and back on the R102, Old South Coast road. This makes for an undulating run that many runners find provides relatively good times.

The race starts at 6 am and entries will be taken at the venue on Saturday between 2 pm and 5 pm, and from 4.30 am on Sunday’s race morning. Marina has more information at 082 567 1425.

Alex Wasps Club provide the action in the midlands with their annual half-marathon and 15 km walk tomorrow that commences from Long Market Girls’ School in Bulwer Street in Pietermaritzburg at 6 am.

Although covering an undulating 21,1 km route through the city suburbs, the start is quite challenging and there is a 900 m “sting in the tail” mineshaft drop at 15 km that catches many runners unawares. There is a shorter 15 km option for walkers and a two-hour, 45-minute cutoff is applied to the event.

Entries are taken tomorrow from 4 pm to 5 pm and from 5 am at the start on race morning. Vic Hydes has more information at 084 982 2048.

Runners are reminded that there will be 2 000 Comrades entries up for grabs on January 30 from 9 am from Mr Price group stores nationwide. More details of the entry process are on www.comrades.com

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