Getting ready for the big marathon

2018-05-29 06:00
PHOTO: nosipho mkhizeSphiwe Mjwara and Quintus van Rooyen will be participating in the Comrades Marathon this year.

PHOTO: nosipho mkhizeSphiwe Mjwara and Quintus van Rooyen will be participating in the Comrades Marathon this year.

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CLERMONT resident Sphiwe Mjwara said that he is working extra hard for this years Comrades Marathon which is taking place on Sunday June 10 with the theme ‘Asijiki-No Turning Back’.
Mjwara who is the founder of an athletics club Amakhosi AC said he will be participating in the marathon with three of his club members who are Sandile Mjwara, Zindela Mbongwa and Samson Dladla.

Mjwara said the three athletes received a generous donation from Quintus van Rooyen a manager of Build it in Pinetown.

He said: “Build it Pinetown sponsored members by buying them a license to enter the Comrades Marathon.”

Van Rooyen added that the good news is he will also be participating in the Comrades Marathon.

He said: “We are all looking forward to the Comrades Marathon and Sphiwe got me to join him in the marathon so we will be running together. I just want to wish my friend Sphiwe good luck and all the best, I hope he smashes it this year.”

Mjwara said that he fell in love with athletics when he was a teenager.

“My uncle Solomon ‘Scara’ Mjwara inspired me a lot. I used to watch him train every morning and evening until I fell in love with athletics. The first thing I thought to myself was that I wanted to keep myself busy and not fall into crime or drugs. So I joined him and my other younger brothers also joined.

“I also conduct local fun walks to motivate my club members. We also enter youth runs and other marathons. One of the club members was asthmatic and relied on using an asthma pump but ever since he trained continuously he hardly ever uses his pump.

“The challenge we are faced with at the moment is that most of the athletes live with their grandparents and they rely on Government grant, but I help out where I can in terms of providing them with lunch whenever we have trips.”

The Comrades Marathon Association (CMA) Race Director, Rowyn James has advised that this year’s down run from Pietermaritzburg to Durban will have six official cut-offs along the 90.184 km route.

The first cut-off will be implemented at Lion Park with subsequent cut-offs positioned at Cato Ridge, the halfway mark in Drummond, Winston Park, Pinetown and with the final one at Sherwood.

James said that the cut-offs, which have been carefully worked out with extensive input from the official comrades coach are an important facet of the race and are there for the well-being of the athlete.

Should a runner not make any one of the cut-offs within the allotted time, they will then need to board one of the provided bailer buses for transportation through to the finish.

He said ignoring the instructions of the CMA route managers, technical officials, security services or marshals will lead to disqualification.

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