Unique night relay a hit

2015-07-01 06:05

ONE of the most unique corporate running events took place last Thursday evening at the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium in the form of the Town Lodge Business Night Relay and proved extremely popular amongst the teams that were taking part.

With a 3.5km route around the stadium and the precinct, the event offers companies a fantastic team building opportunity during the winter months with runners and walkers being taken as high as the 5th level of the magnificent stadium.

At one stage, teams standing in the transition area on level 2 can follow the progress of their team mates running above them (along level 5) and below them (across level 1).

Defending champions Gamble Pharmacy claimed the first round of the 2015 Town Lodge Business Night Relay on Thursday evening at the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium amid strong competition from the Transnet and SPAR Eastern Cape teams in the initial stages of the relay.

Despite being without their star runner, Olympian Lusapo April, who will be back for them in round 2, the Uitenhage team saw their 5 runners covering the 17.5km distance in a time of 57 minutes and 45 seconds to finish just under 2 minutes ahead of the Transnet runners.

The Gamble Pharmacy mixed team also managed to keep out the Transnet runners in the Mixed Relay division whilst the Jeffreys Bay ladies from Moore Stephens won the Ladies’ relay division. The Still Dreaming team from Bluewater Bay Athletics Club continued where they left off last season with another overwhelming win in the Walking category ahead of Town Lodge Housekeeping and the social team ‘One step at a time’.

“This was my first time taking part in the night relay and it was a great route to run especially once up on the top level of the stadium and getting to look out over the field!” said Pagdens Attorneys team member Michael Beyleveld.

“There are not many occasions where one is able to experience that. Running inside and around the stadium was definitely a great decision and I look forward to the upcoming races later this year with the Pagdens’ team.”

The Town Lodge Business Night Relay will take place again on Tuesday, July 21, at the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium and is open to running teams of 5 runners or walking teams of 3 walkers. Results and pictures from the first round are available on the Series website www.BusinessNightRelay.co.za

East Cape surfers excel

Nikita Robb from East London won the Ballito Women’s Pro presented by Billabong at Willard Beach in KwaDukuza on Sunday, producing an assured performance in the tricky one metre waves to outshine South Africa’s top women surfers.

A World Surf League (WSL) Qualifying Series (QS) 1,000 event, the Ballito Women’s Pro, is the first internationally rated event to be run in South Africa since 2009.

The event offered total prize-money of R30 000 and coveted points on the QS rankings. Robb defeated Faye Zoetmulder (Port Elizabeth), local junior Teal Hogg (Umhlanga) and veteran Heather Clark (Port Shepstone) in the final to claim the R10 000 winner’s paycheque and 1 000 points.

“It’s just such an honour to have won this event,” Robb said. “I came up to Ballito a couple of days early and just surfed every day. It’s been a long time since I surfed an event and I really had to get my head into it.

“I started in Round One and had to surf four heats, so I worked hard for it. It wasn’t just a matter of one day and I’m getting 10 Grand, it was a matter of me putting the effort in the water, spending endless hours being the only girl out there and really getting to know the wave. I put the effort in and that’s what really counts.”

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