Friday start for Olympics athletics

2012-08-01 00:00

Olympic athletics commences in London on Friday with Cornel Fredericks and LJ van Zyl in the 400-metres hurdles heats and Khotso Mokoena looking to qualify for the long-jump final.

These are three strong medal contenders, although they have battled in recent meetings.

KZN’s Tanith Maxwell is joined by Rene Kalmer and

Irvette van Blerk in the marathon over a twisty and undulating course on Sunday.

The athletics at the Games continue until the final day when the men’s marathon will be one of the featured events for Team South Africa.

Johan van der Merwe was a clear winner in the 2012 Washie 100-miler, taking 13 hours seven minutes and five seconds for the course from Port Alfred to East London.

Although the time was just slower than the fastest time recorded in Washie history, he took an incorrect turning and added around 1,7 kilometres to the distance. Manie Saayman ran the fastest time yet recorded in the Washie back in 1982, but that was prior to the current method of course verification, while Van der Merwe was on a course that was previously certified, albeit now out of the five-year verification period.

This is one of the fastest times for a 100-mile event in South Africa in the past 20 years.

Megan Davey, who was third overall, was the first women in 18:22,37.

Collegians Harriers hosted its annual Braai Ketts longest day at their club grounds in Boschoff Street, with Mzwakhe Khanyile taking the honours with an impressive 142 kilometres, averaging just under five minutes per kilometre on the 333-metre grass track for a full 12 hours.

Eskom’s Nkosi Mvelase was Khanyile’s greatest competition, but could only complete 124,18 kilometres, with Henk Moen completing the podium on 117 kilometres.

Westville’s Tammy Dennill was the best of the women, accumulating 105 kilometres, which was the sixth best overall. Dennill was the only woman to break the 100-kilometre barrier, with DAC’s Khaya Mahlati in second on 97,33 kilometres.

The KZN team for the SA half-marathon championships, to be held in Cape Town on August 26, includes Syabonga Nkonde, who recently won the Oaston Half Marathon in the United States.

The full team is:

• senior men: Thobani Chagwe;

• senior women: Daniel Adlam, Puseletso Dladla, Cary-ann Smith;

• women 40: Jenene Carey, Silver Shani;

• men 40: Petros Sosibo;

• junior men: Hlongwa Malwande

• junior women: Slindile Chil;

• men 50: Simphiwe Ntentesa;

• women 50: Grace De Oliveira,

Men 60: Bongani Ndlovu, Eric Quibell;

• men 70: Roger Bailey; and

• women 70: Gill Tregenna

The Chesterville 10-kilometre challenge scheduled for Sunday has been cancelled.

The KZN Cross-Country Championships take place on August 18 at Hutchinson Park in Amanzimtoti. This is a key event for any athletes wishing to be considered for selection to the SA Cross Country Championships that will be held over the same course on September 8. The KZN championships will be a dry run for the organisers, who have introduced a number of innovations, in their championship preparations including numbers with chips. This will assist in results, but does require runners to pre-

enter the race through the KZN office or at other cross-country league events.

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