This coming weekend, the South African athletics world will turn its attention to the much-anticipated Comrades Marathon, where international athletes will return to the road.
After a two-year hiatus due to the devastating Corvid-19 pandemic, the race is set to return to KwaZulu-Natal this year.
Comrades Association marketing and communications specialist Delaine Cools says it’s all set and runners can strut their stuff at the ultramarathon.
The road race will take place on Sunday 28 August 2022, starting outside the Town Hall in Pietermaritzburg and finishing at the Moses Mabhid Stadium.
Local long distance runners and those visiting from overseas are set to take part in the famous Comrades 2022 marathon in KwaZulu-Natal this weekend.
“There’s a lot of excitement in the air, especially if you’re in Durban or KZN, the excitement is really palpable… Covid-19 has given us more time to plan, Comrades really takes more than 13 months to plan,” Cools told EWN.
The specialist in communications and marketing added that the transfer of dates from June to August is connected with complaints about harsh winter conditions in the country.
“In Gauteng we had runners complaining about the winter and waking up cold. We’re waiting to see how it pans out this year, but at the planning stage everything is going according to plan,” she added.
Meanwhile, former winner Bruce Fordyce shared an encouraging message for this year’s contestants, saying they shouldn’t start out as cowards.
“I’ve always started every Comrades very cautiously and I can’t help stressing that the best way for beginners to start their first Comrades is slowly and wisely,” he told The Citizen.
“Comrades reward not the brave and the brave, but the gentle. Starting like a coward means starting cautiously, holding back, treating the challenge with immense respect and keeping in mind that there are 90 tough, hilly kilometers ahead of you.”
The popular marathon is expected to start at 5.30am and run until 5.30pm on Sunday.
Main image: Comrades Marathon.com/Twitter