Edward Mothibi and Gerda Steyn came out on top in the 2019 Comrades Marathon. Picture: Motshwari Mofokeng/African News Agency (ANA)
Edward Mothibi and Gerda Steyn came out on top in the 2019 Comrades Marathon. Picture: Motshwari Mofokeng/African News Agency (ANA)

Edward Mothibi excited about ‘Race The Comrades Legends’

By Sports Reporter Time of article published Jun 8, 2020

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CAPE TOWN - The Comrades Marathon is set to stage the world’s largest virtual event - Race The Comrades Legends - on Sunday, June 14.

 The popular ultra-marathon was cancelled due to the Covid-19 pandemic, but runners are now able to enter the virtual event, choosing from a variety of distance categories, and run their favourite route whether it be on their property, a treadmill or on the open road. Not only will entrants be able to participate in the virtual event, they will also be able to ‘Race the Comrades Legends’.

‘Race The Comrades Legends’ is a running concept based on the stories of the greatest Comrades Legends in history. The official Comrades Marathon website will include an online functionality where runners can virtually compete, run with and compare their times against the likes of Bruce Fordyce, Frith van der Merwe, Samuel Tshabalala and several others. Each participant creates their personal story and on completion is able to earn a real medal.

Reigning Comrades Marathon 2019 Champions, Edward Mothibi and Gerda Steyn, have confirmed that they will be competing in the 2020 virtual event.

With the entry tally nearing 20 000, the CMA is ensuring that ‘Race the Comrades Legends’ is The Ultimate Virtual Race creating a sense of camaraderie for athletes within their social space, adding value to running clubs and the running scene; and helping raise funds for the charitable sector amid the Covid-19 pandemic and lockdown.

Mothibi, who is a Clerk at the Impala Platinum Mine, claimed his inaugural victory in last year’s Comrades Marathon Up Run in a winning time of 5:31:33.

“I will be running the 21km in next Sunday’s ‘Race The Comrades Legends’. I have not been training properly with the lockdown regulations so I will enjoy a casual run at a leisurely pace," Mothibi said.

"With this being a virtual race, I will probably run my favourite route around where I live in Freedom Park in Platinum Village, Rustenburg. I will see who I can run with and make it a social experience and ensure that we adhere to social distancing norms and respect the rules.

"I am excited about this ‘Race The Comrades Legends’ because it is these legends who have inspired us to run the Comrades Marathon. As a runner and an average humble person.”

Steyn, who is currently in Dubai, stunned the nation with her record-breaking Comrades Up Run victory in 5:58:53 and will also be participating in the 21km event. “After the cancellation of just about all running events, it is great that we can participate in this virtual race. The ‘Race The Comrades Legends’ will provide us with the opportunity to run with our friends and be a part of it, wherever we are,” Steyn said.

“Running in Dubai’s challenging conditions will not be easy, but I will run with a small group of friends which is allowed. I will run along my favourite route around The Greens which is close to the Arabian Gulf. I will run at my Comrades pace, but it will definitely be a social run rather than anything else.”

South African entrants who have entered the 2020 Comrades Marathon get a free entry into ‘Race The Comrades Legends’. Entries close 14 June 2020. The virtual race could be the biggest one yet and stands a chance to make history.


IOL Sport

 

 

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