Budza and Van Rooyen tops in Nimas Hillcrest Marathon

2010-02-16 00:00

SHINGE Budza won the Nimas Hillcrest Marathon on Sunday, which attracted a massive field of 2 500 runners.

Sandile Lembethe was the early leader, coming back up after the first lap down to the bottom of Winston Park.

Lembethe was unable to sustain his lead, eventually finishing outside the top five. Budza timed his move to perfection and proceeded to open almost a kilometre over the Mr Price duo of Eric Ngubane and Vusi Mnyandu to take the tape in 2 hours 24 minutes 36 seconds.

Richards Bay’s Melanie van Rooyen took control of the women’s race to record a useful 3:07:07 victory, 500 metres clear of Helen Burley.

The light drizzle and cool overcast conditions lasted long enough for the majority of winners to get around the two-lap course in some of the best times seen in recent years. Almost 1 200 runners finished under the five-hour Comrades and Two Oceans qualifying time.

Prodigal Khumalo won the half-marathon in 1hr 7min 33sec, with more than a one-minute advantage over Mr Price club-mate Michael Ngaseke.

The Boxer club was to the fore in the women’s one-lapper, with Danelle Adlam in a class of her own taking the tape in 1:23:27 followed by Grace de Oliveira well over a kilometre adrift. De Oliveira also won the 40-49 category and Janene Carey, who seems to be struggling to regain last year’s form, won the 35-39 category for the Boxer club.

The single-lap competition attracted a large crowd, many of whom appeared to be using the race as preparation for the Weekend Witness Postnet Marathon and KZN Marathon championships on February 28.

Online entries are now the only way of securing a place. This can be done through www.pmb42.co.za until Saturday, February 20. No late entries will be taken for either the marathon or 21 km distances, but runners should note that this is the final Two Oceans qualifying marathon in KZN.

Boxer’s Sazi Ndaba had a busy but fruitful, weekend of racing when he took the honours in Saturday night’s Emnambithi half-marathon in 1:11:34, then crashed through the tape in the following morning’s DB Enterprise’s 10km race in 31:14.

Judith Geldenhuys completely dominated the women’s race almost 20 minutes clear of her nearest competition and leaving the youngsters in her wake to add the 50-59 age group to her medal haul.

Despite his useful half-marathon a mere 15 hours before, Ndaba was as dominant in Sunday’s 10 km held about 35 km outside Ladysmith, where he was just under a minute ahead of Thembenkosi Maphalala of the KZN Striders Club.

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