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Marathon aces for George
- Updated: January 25, 2012
The Garden Route town of George hosts the national marathon championships for the second year running on Sunday, 5 February.
Amongst names who will be competing this year are 2011 runner up Coolboy Ngamole (Central North West) and Othaniel Phahlane from Gauteng North (fourth in 2011).┬á Ngamole ran 2:10:43 in Valencia, Spain at the end of November and should be amongst the contenders for the top spot in the absence of defending champion Lusapho April.
SA record holder Gert Thys, recently cleared of doping chargers, will also be looking to run a fast time as the 40-year-old veteran will be using all of his substantial experience to make his mark again on the marathon world.
Charne Bosman (Gauteng North) is looking to defend her title with runner-up Tshifhiwa Mundalamo also back to challenge for line honours
Over R276┬á000 was made available by Athletics SA for prize money on the day.┬áBoth male and female winners of the championships will receive R50┬á000 while the runners-up and third place athletes get R30┬á000 and R15┬á000 respectively.┬á Other incentives include R100┬á000 for breaking the SA record (2:06:33 for men and 02:26:35 for women) and R25┬á000 for a finishing time in the World top 50.
The route will consist of a 14km loop starting in York Street in George where athletes will make their way to the suburb of Pacaltsdorp.┬á A number of historic buildings can be seen in this area including Rev Charles Pacalt’s mission cottage constructed in 1813.┬á The building was declared a national monument in 1976.┬á A tree planted 300 years ago can also be found in this area and is known as “The Tree of Meeting” as the locals used the tree for church services.
The SA Marathon Championships can also be used as an Olympic qualifying race.
The SA Marathon Championships will start at 5.30am at the PW Botha College in York Street, George