Cronje may miss mile | SASCOC - SASCOC

Cronje may miss mile

By Mark Etheridge

The last man to run a sub four-minute mile in South Africa might miss out on the new mile incentive at the upcoming Yellow Pages track and field meetings.

Athletics South Africa and Yellow Pages have identified the mile race as an event to concentrate on and are offering R5000 to the first athlete to go under four minutes for the mile with additional rewards of R1000 to any other runners also going under the magical four-minute mark.

December will feature four meetings in the space of eight days, starting in Coetzenburg, Stellenbosch on December 10, then moving on to Oudtshoorn (Dec 13), Port Elizabeth (Dec 15) and finally back to the Western Cape for the meeting in Parow on Dec 18.

But Johan Cronje, who ran 3min 58.81sec, also in Parow, on December 16 five years ago, is in a race to get competition fit again. “My training was going well until about three weeks ago when I injured my knee on a hilly 10km course so I’m not able to do any running at present. I hope it won’t take too long to heal. But the 2011 season is still far away and I don’t mind a little break right now. This is the first I’ve heard about the mile events so I didn’t work it into my plans for this year or next.

“But I love the sub four-minute mile idea… they can make it a big attraction if they plan it decently but it would have been nice to know a bit earlier. I’m definitely keen to compete but it all depends on how the injury recovers.”

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