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Top runners take the podium at marathon challenge

South African runners once again took home the gold.

The second race of the Gauteng Challenge Marathon, a 42,2km run, kicked off at Mogale City’s Centenary Hall with MMC for Sport, Art and Culture, Annah Setswalo firing the starting gun, writes Randfontein Herald’s freelance reporter Raymond Moeng.

This is despite the 30 minutes delay due to buses ferrying athletes from Johannesburg to Mogale City. The race attracted top athletes from other parts of the continent such as Lesotho, Ethiopia, Kenya and Zimbabwe.

Kenyan athlete Shadrack Kimboi made his intentions clearly known when he went solo from the word go without any opposition.

It was only the South African Michael Papi Mazibuko who trailed behind the Kenyan for a long time, with a strong bunch of athletes competing for the third position.

After 40km Mazibuko, the former Soweto Marathon winner fell back to third position with Bennedict Moeng from Toyota finishing second in a time of 2:16:33 and Mazibuko from Bonitas in 2:17:06.

Kimboi, the lanky Kenyan proved his dominance in this race just like his compatriot Timothy Kibet did last year. Kimboi improved on Kibet’s winning time of 2:17:33 by finishing in a time of 2:14:06.

In the women’s section, South Africa had something to smile about when the slim Mapaseka Makhanya of Bonitas destroyed a strong field of top international stars like Lesotho’s Mamorallo Tjoka who has the knack for dominating South African premier events such as the Soweto Marathon. This time Tjoka came second in 2:38:40 and Makhanya who repeated her feat at the Spar Women’s Race finished in 2:37:06, while last year’s defending champion from Kenya, Eunice Muchiri had to settle for third place with a time of 2:41:48.

Mapaseka improved Muchiri’s winning time of last year by 0:06:02.


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