Call to spring into action as city race draws closer

2016-01-06 06:00

THE new year is barely under way, but the countdown to The Witness Maritzburg City Marathon, powered by Clover, is on.

The event takes place on 27 and 28 February, with the main race, the full marathon, on Sunday, 28 February.

Voted the best organised marathon­ in South Africa by a number of prestigious running publications, the marathon is utilised by more runners than any other race to qualify for the Comrades Marathon.

“Entries are coming in steadily for both the marathon and the half-marathon. The trail run and 10km entries are a bit slower,” said race organiser John Hall.

“They are in shops and people are starting to fax in their entry forms. We will be at a number of races to collect the entries and the first one will be the Ronnie Davel Memorial at Hilton on 10 January,” he added.

With the race only two months away, Hall said it was time for runners to spring into action, if they had not already done so.

“They should be starting to follow­ a programme. That’s the most important thing,” he said.

“If they don’t already belong to a club and they’ve got long-term running plans, they should think about joining a club to get peer support, mainly.”

The new start and finish venue for the race is the Pietermaritzburg Msunduzi Stadium, but there is some concern about whether it will be finished in time.

“We’re planning for it to be ready,” Hall said.

“It is going to be touch and go, because the handover date of the stadium is towards the end of February, which is three days before the marathon. The track is ready and a lot of the superstructure is ready.

“If it is not ready, we have Plan B ready, and the venue will still be Alexandra Park, in the vicinity of the athletics stadium,” Hall explained.

“Early in January the new course, with its profile and all information, will be up on the website for everybody to check.”

Hall said information was being consistently updated on the Maritzburg City Marathon Facebook and Twitter pages.

“The Facebook page is Maritzburg City Marathon and our Twitter­ address is @infopmb42,” Hall said.

“If people post, we would like them to use the hashtag #pmb42.”

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