Long distance athletes have been in good form on the domestic and international road running circuits over the last few days.
On home soil, some of the elite contenders stuck up their hands in the build-up to the Comrades Marathon, while across the Atlantic, veteran wheelchair racer Ernst van Dyk put up a fight once again at the world’s oldest standard marathon race.
Strengthening his grip on the popular annual race, veteran ultra-distance specialist Charles Tjiane won the Forever Resorts Loskop Marathon in Middelburg on Saturday.
Tjiane completed the 50km race, which had started an hour late due to protests on the route, in 2:48:55.
In the women’s race, Comrades champion Ann Ashworth reclaimed the Loskop title she won two years ago, cruising home in 3:24:37.
1 Charles Tjiane (Maxed) 2:48:56, 2 Kagisa Matjile (Nedbank) 2:52:33, 3 Mmanoko Mokwalakwala (Arcelor Mittal) 2:53:24, 4 Collin Parura (Phobians) 2:54:30, 5 Joseph Mphuthi (Sibanye Stillwater) 2:56:13
1 Ann Ashworth (Massmart) 3:24:38, 2 Cobie Smith (Nedbank) 3:28:40, 3 Renata Vosloo (Massmart) 3:31:01, 4 Eunice Nhlapho (Eskom) 3:35:41, 5 Carol Smith (Vitality) 3:45:32
Continuing to produce a persistent challenge at the prestigious Boston Marathon, one of six races in the World Marathon Majors series, veteran athlete Ernst van Dyk took fifth place in the wheelchair division in Massachusetts on Monday.
A 10-time former winner of the race, the 46-year-old South African covered the 42km distance in 1:27:23, and though he was nearly six minutes off the pace of 20-year-old American winner Daniel Romanchuk, Van Dyk finished in the top six in Boston for the 19th year in succession.
1 Lawrence Cherono (Kenya) 2:07:57, 2 Lelisa Desisa (Ethiopia) 2:07:59, 3 Kenneth Kipkemoi (Kenya) 2:08:07
Wheelchair men: 1 Daniel Romanchuk (USA) 1:21:36, 2 Masazumi Soejima (Japan) 1:24:30, 3 Marcel Hug. (Switzerland) 1:26:42… 5 Ernst van Dyk (South Africa) 1:27:23
1 Worknesh Degefa (Ethiopia) 2:23:31, 2 Edna Kiplagat (Kenya) 2:24:13, 3 Jordan Hassay (USA) 2:25:20
Wheelchair women: 1 Manuela Schar (Switzerland) 1:34:19, 2 Tatyana Mcfadden (USA) 1:41:35, 3 Madison de Rozario (Australia) 1:41:36