Banyana Banyana captain Janine van Wyk and former Olympic middle distance star Hezekiél Sepeng are among sports personalities who have heeded the call by Ipeleng “CrazyLegs” Khunou to lace up their running shoes in the 67km for Mandela Day virtual race.
Khunou famously competed in the Two Oceans marathon on crutches.
Now he has challenged the likes of Van Wyk and Sepeng to participate in the race that starts on Wednesday and ends on July 18 – Mandela Day.
The race seeks to raise funds for the Nelson Mandela Children’s Fund.
Interested parties can join the virtual race from anywhere in the world, the organisers said.
Reigning Comrades Marathon champion Edward Mothibi, 2016 women’s Comrades winner Charne Bosman, former cricketer JP Duminy, comedian Siv Ngesi, sports anchors Lebo Motsoeli and OG Molefe have all confirmed their participation.
“The challenge can be completed anytime between today and July 18 when Mandela Day is observed. This year also celebrates the 25th year the Nelson Mandela Children’s Fund has been in existence,” the organisers said in a statement on Wednesday.
Mandela Children’s Fund Nomthi Mnisi, director of communications and marketing, said: “We are absolutely thrilled that Ipeleng and the team have joined us in what is the inaugural virtual event for Mandela Day. There is a nominal fee of R250 which will go a long way in supporting the children of South Africa in need.”
In 2018, Khunou participated in the Virgin British 10km in London in support of the fund.
“Madiba’s message was always centred on giving of one’s self and being of service to our society. This was an opportunity for me to once again support the work of the fund and I encourage everyone to make this their cause this Mandela Day,” he said.
Participants can log onto the dedicated virtual event online at www.vfcseries.com, create a profile and link their smart devices.
Daily data uploads are plotted on the virtual route, overlaid into a Google street view so they can see how they are doing compared to other “racers” in the same event in real time.
Exercise data linked to all major smart mobile devices are supported with the virtual race app available in Android and Apple stores.
Join the 67km for Mandela Day Facebook group or follow #67km4MandelaDay.