Feast after the famine for runners this weekend

2010-07-09 00:00

FAMINE or feast — that’s the province’s road running this month. After the race restrictions of the World Cup, this weekend sees three events on the go, beginning with the Mfuli Game Farm 15-kilometre tomorrow.

After an easy start there is a steep, tough climb to the highest point around five kilometres into the run before the predominantly downhill return to the start. The Mfuli game park, in the Nkwaleni valley outside Empangeni, has a diversity of fauna, flora. Starting tomorrow at 1.30 pm, this event lends itself to a family weekend away.

Entries are taken at the Umhlathuze clubhouse at Addison Park tonight from 5 pm to 6.30 pm, or tomorrow from noon at the start. There is a bus from Addison Park at 1 pm tomorrow. Details of the race, transport and accommodation are available from Sonia Bauman at 082 558 3404.

On Sunday, runners will unfortunately be split between two races. The Sardine half-marathon starts from Douglas Mitchell Park in Uvongo at 6.30 am and is a 21 km race that is timed to link in with the annual sardine shoals. The course follows the old south coast road and finishes back in Uvongo. The first 600 finishers receive T-shirts, and walkers are welcome. The first two men and women earn cash prizes.

Entries are taken tomorrow at the clubhouse from 2 pm to 4 pm, and at the start from 5 am on Sunday. Kim Rice has race details at 084 511 7651.

The other race is the Forest 10-kilometre, which makes use of a relatively flat and potentially fast figure-of-eight course in the Foresthills suburb in the middle of the Kloof Valley.

The race is open to runners and walkers, and Sandile Lembetha’s 2003 course record of 29 minutes 45 seconds gives an indication of the speeds obtainable on the course, provided runners allow for the gradual climb in the first two kilometres.

The race commences at 7 am from the clubhouse and Lucy Kewley has more details at 082 868 2723.

Leading South African runners will head to Botswana for the Phikwe marathon, which doubles as the Botswana national championships and offers R27 000 for a first place over the course around the mining town.

KwaZulu-Natal Athletics will hold a special general meeting on July 24 to formally elect an athletes’ committee. Given the issues still plaguing the sport at national level, clubs and athletes will be expecting Athletics South Africa interim board member and provincial chairman Aleck Skosana to provide some feedback to the provincial representatives. The meeting will be at Kings Park Athletics Stadium Boardroom at 9 am.

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