Zimbabwean Elmor Sibanda wins inaugural Phoenix Villagers

2013-05-23 00:00

ZIMBABWEAN Elmor Sibanda was the winner of the inaurgural Phoenix Villagers 10 km, which was held over a single-lap course immediately prior to the SA 10 km Championships this weekend.

Sibanda opened his lead after six kilometres and had 11 seconds in hand when he crashed through the finish at King’s Park track in an impressive 29 minutes, 34 seconds. Transkei’s Lungile Gongqa followed in 29:49 with Thubalethu Phaku recovering sufficiently from the previous days cross country to complete the podium in 31:03

Umhlanga-based Nicole Brits took the women’s race in 37 minutes, 21 seconds, while Pat Dammann continued to impress with her 40 minutes, 18 seconds performance for second, and was first in the 40-49 catergory.

Although many of the top runners were saving themselves for the following day’s SA 10km champs, there was a good turn out for the Savages cross-county league held at Westridge on Saturday, with Thubalethu Phaku dominating the senior men’s 12 km in a time of 41 minutes, 52 seconds for the challenging and technical course around the tennis stadium. Luvoyo Mhlakoza was a distant second in 44:17.

Natal Carbineers’s Xoli Madida was the best of the women in the eight kilometre, taking 37:58 for the four-lapper and opening over 150 metres on Lenor Steffens from Queensburgh.

The local running community was saddened this week to learn of the death of Eric Biyase.

Biyase was a long-time record holder of The Witness Capital Climb. He represented the province many times over the shorter distances and was one of the first athletes to compete overseas when the international ban was lifted. Although he stopped competing over a decade ago, he never lost his interest in athletics.

The only event this weekend is Sunday’s East Coast Discovery Big Walk, which starts at uShaka at the south end of the promenade at 7 am. There are 15 km, 10 km, five kilometre distances, with a 20km walk as a competitive timed race.

The event has attracted over 30 000 participants, making it the biggest event in KwaZulu-Natal. Entrants are reminded to register early at the Moses Mahbida stadium.

All distances finish at the People’s Park.


Phoenix Villagers 10km:

Men: 1 Elmor Sibanda Maxed Elite 29:34

2 Lungile Gongqa Transkei 29:49

3 Thubalethu Phaku DUT 31:03

35-39 Nkosinathi Ngcongo stella 33:16

40-49. Joseph Mandisha Bluff FI 33:50

50-59. Mike Skivington Savages 41:40

60. Bongani Ndlovu Zabalala 43:09

Women: 1 Nicole Brits IND 37:21

2 Pat Dammann Foresthills 40:18

3 Nomcebo Mthethwa uMhlathuze 40:23

35-39. Sibongile Mpanza Boxer 43:59

40-49 Pat Dammann forest 40:18

50-59 Dawn Francheis PDAC 50:40

60. Maureen Perry. Chiltern 1:01:16

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