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Professa Mthethwa 18th at Comrades 2024

The City of Mbombela Marathon Club member paced himself very well and averaged 04:01 per kilometre.

Professa Mthethwa of the City of Mbombela Marathon Club completed his eighth Comrades Marathon in a personal best time (PB) of 05:45:30 and claimed 18th place overall in the 2024 edition of the ultramarathon from Durban to Pietermaritzburg on Sunday June 9.

He finished 13th in the senior men’s category. His previous PB, set in 2023, was 05:57:01. On Sunday, he improved this time by a remarkable 11 minutes and 31 seconds to achieve his second-best placing in the race.

The City of Mbombela Marathon Club member executed his race plan almost perfectly. His pace at the Pinetown split (18.47km) was 03:58 per kilometre. This pace did not deviate by more than three seconds per kilometre for the rest of the race.

He was 128th overall at Pinetown, 69th at Drummond (42.2km) and 28th at the Umlaas Road split (67.5km). He had the energy to maintain a pace of 04:01 per kilometre over the last 15km. His average pace over the 85.91km was also 04:01 per kilometre.

Victor Mahlobo. Photo: marathonphotos.live

Victor Mahlobo was the second City of Mbombela Marathon Club runner to run a sub-six-hour 2024 Comrades. He was the second Lowvelder to cross the finish
line in 05:58:13. His average pace was 04:10 per kilometre. He was 40th overall and the 31st senior man.

The third Lowvelder in Pietermaritzburg, the sixth 50-59 man and 162nd overall man, was Moris Maiga of Bella’s Athletics Club. The 2024 Two Oceans 50-59 years champion
ran the Comrades in 06:41:17. The 50-year-old’s average pace was 04:40 per kilometre.

Another Lowvelder, Folavio Sehohle, attempted his first Comrades. In his debut 2024 Two Oceans (56km), he claimed 11th place in 03:15:22.

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On arriving in Durban on Friday, he fell ill with a tummy bug. Running in the colours of the Pan African Resources Club, his aim was to earn a top 10 finish at the Comrades.

Despite not feeling well, he started the race and was in 33rd place at the Umlaas Road split. The determined athlete, hampered by frequent stops, dropped to 712th place over the next 11km and bailed with just 7km to go. It was a courageous effort. He maintained an average pace of between 03:59 and 04:02 per kilometre for 79km. But it was not to be – his body could continue no more.

“My coach said I must stop. I was now drained and I couldn’t see anymore,” Sehohle said.

He is down, but certainly not out. A newcomer to ultramarathons, the Lowvelder is positive about the future. “I was confident to finish in the top 10, but I gained a lot of experience and will move forward. I now have to shift to the 2025 Two Oceans. My goal is to win it.”

Thandeka Hlatshwayo. Photo: marathonphotos.live

The first female Lowvelder to finish the 2024 Comrades was Thandeka Hlatshwayo of the City of Mbombela Marathon Club. She was the 125th woman overall and 61st in the senior female category in 08:19:03.

The second local woman, and the 81st senior and 177th overall woman, was Bella’s Athletics Club’s Segwana Tladi. She froze the stopwatch on 08:39:45.

Segwana Tladi. Photo: marathonphotos.live

Wendy Bosch of the City of Mbombela Marathon Club was the third female Lowveld athlete in 08:41:30. She was the 87th 40-49 years female to finish.

Jerry Maseko of Nedbank LVCC is a living Lowveld Comrades legend. He completed his 31st race on Sunday. He claimed 17th place in the 60-69 years category. What makes Maseko’s 2024 race even more remarkable is that he completed the 2022 race in 11:20:23 and the 2023 race in 11:09:23, but on Sunday the 60-year-old reaped the reward of experience and hard training and clocked 08:23:19.

Jerry Maseko. Photo: marathonphotos.live

Another local Comrades icon, Johannes Nyalunga of Ngodwana Marathon Club, completed his 30th race. He ran his first Comrades in 1987, the same year in which Bruce
Fordyce won the seventh of his nine Comrades titles.

Johannes Nyalunga. Photo: marathonphotos.live

Nyalunga has run all of his 30 races in the colours of the Ngodwana club with race number 18 404. His time this year was 09:13:28.

Patrick Ntimane of Bella’s earned his double green number (20 finishes) in a time of 08:46:08.

Legogote Villagers’ Ashley Betteridge finished in 09:50:18 to earn his green number (10 finishes).

Eric Gwamba of Ngodwana Marathon Club was the last Lowvelder to cross the finish line. He finished 56 seconds before the cut-off time, in 11:59:04.

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