Wesley Botton
Chief sports writer
1 minute read
16 Jan 2017
2:30 pm

Spectators get their popular Comrades spot back

Wesley Botton

The marathon's organisers confirm there won't be any detours around Pinetown again as was the case in 2016.

Gift Kelehe won the previous 'up' run of the Comrades in 2015. Photo: Anesh Debiky/Gallo Images.

The course for this year’s Comrades Marathon will pass through Pinetown again, organisers have confirmed, after the previous edition of the ‘up’ run bypassed the popular spectator point.

Due to road works, the last ‘up’ run between Durban and Pietermaritzburg in 2015 had deviated from the usual route, around 20 kilometres into the ultra-distance race.

“We will return to the original up-run course through Pinetown without any detours, and follow the traditional route,” race director Rowyn James said in a statement on Monday.

The only other change to the route had been made over the last seven kilometres, in order to cater for the change to the finish at Scottsville Racecourse, with the race returning to the venue after organisers had used the Oval Cricket Stadium since 2004.

“The route is similar to the one of the 1998 and 2000 Comrades Marathons, with a few minor tweaks here and there,” James said.

The official distance of the race, which changed most years for various reasons, would be 86.73km, the Comrades Marathon Association revealed, making the 2017 contest 990 metres shorter than the 2015 race.

The 92nd edition of the annual event was set to be held on June 4, with South African athletes Gift Kelehe and Caroline Wostmann expected to turn out in defence of their ‘up’ run titles.

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