A little bit of history about the comrades marathon.The first run was on 24 May 1921. It is an ultramarathon of approximately 90 km, annually run in the KwaZulu-Natal Province of South Africa between the cities of Durban and Pietermaritzburg. It is the world’s largest and oldest ultramarathon race. The run is attended by over 20,000 runners from more than 60 countries. In all but three runnings since 1988, over 10,000 runners have reached the finish within the allowed 11 or 12 hours. Runners over the age of 20 qualify when they are able to complete an officially recognised marathon (42.2 km) in under five hours. During the event an athlete must also reach five cut-off points in specified times to complete the race. The spirit of the Comrades Marathon is said to be embodied by attributes of camaraderie, selflessness, dedication and perseverance.
The Comrades Marathon Association (CMA) has six official cut-offs along the 90.184km route.The first cut-off was 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.
|Cut Off||Distance Done||Distance to go||Time|
|Lion Park||15,574km||74,610km||02:30:00 (08h00)|
|Cato Ridge||30,276km||59,908km||04:20:00 (09h50)|
|Winston Park||57,610km||32,574km||08:00:00 (13h30)|
The 2018 Comrades Down Run was held on 10th June, it was slightly longer than the previous Down Run route, this year’s Down Run was 90,184km. The Marathon started at 05h30 outside the Pietermaritzburg City Hall. NO spectators were allowed at the start of the event due to limitations of crowd control and safety. Should the Winners (Man and Woman) of the 2018 Comrades Marathon break the Best Time previously recorded for the “Down Run”, he or she will receive a cash payment of R440, 000.00 (Approximately ksh 3 million)
MALE BEST TIME: 05:18:19 by David Gatebe in 2016
FEMALE BEST TIME: 05:54:43 by Frith Van der Merwe in 1989
Wally Hayward is the oldest finisher at 80 years old in 1989.
The finish of the 2018 Comrades Marathon was at the iconic Moses Mabhida Stadium. ST JOHN’S provided first aid. Bongumusa Mthembu won the men’s race in a time of 05:35:14.
Mthembu says it was an emotional race.
“Comrades Marathon is a tricky race, you have to be strong in your mind. I went through a lot this season but with the grace of God I was able to run today, so I’m quite happy and excited. But this is a very emotional era.”
South African Ann Ashworth was the first lady to cross the line in a time of 6:10:04 in front of Gerda Steyn. Congratulations to everyone who participated.