DURBAN – The Durban SPAR Women’s Challenge was held Yesterday (5 June). Olympian runner, Irvette van Zyl from the Nedbank Running Club, left her challengers behind in the 10km race when she finished at a record time of 33 minutes 26 seconds. Running at a steady pace of 3:20 per kilometre for the entire duration of the race Van Zyl proved too fast for her other runners.
Cornelia Joubert came in second place with a time of 34:26 and in third place, Lebo-Diana Phalula (34:39), both from Boxer AC.
Zimbabwean Rutendo Nyahora (34:48), Glenrose Xaba (34:50) and Christine Kalmer (35:05) who all crossed the line virtually together to fill fourth, fifth and sixth places this time around.
Despite Van Zyl’s performance, she said she would have liked to have posted a faster time but that she was nursing a knee injury, but decided to run the race to give her knee a try-out in what has become known in road-running circles as “the country’s most beautiful race” led out annually by the traditional vanguard of bikers from Steelwings Club on their shining Harley Davidson motorcycles. Her effort earned her R20 000 which she also collected for winning in Cape Town and Port Elizabeth this year. Van Zyl will also be running at the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro in August.
Joubert also expressed mixed feelings about her performance today saying: “I came fourth last year and second this year but my time today was slower than last year’s and this a cause for concern.”
“We were pleased with the new route, and a new look and feel for the Challenge this year at Growthpoint Kings Park Stadium,” said Rob Philipson, MD of SPAR KZN. “It was fantastic having our race so well supported and the energy was really palpable. We are in awe of the athletic prowess of the top runners, but we also applaud the amazing efforts shown by young and old alike – it was amazing to see participants as young as nine years walking together with some that were older than 80!”
There was 16 074 entries at the close of registration late on Saturday afternoon with most women opting for the 10km run/walk and the balance signing up for the 5km fun run/walk.
1. Irvette van Zyl 33:26 (Nedbank)
2. Cornelia Joubert (Boxer) 34:26
3. Lebo-Diana Phalula (Boxer) 34:39
4. Rutendo Nyahora (Nedbank) 34:48
5. Glenrose Xaba 34:50
6. Christine Kalmer (KPMG) 35:05
7. Mapaseka Makhanya 35:29
8. Jenet Dlamini 35:33
9. Tanith Maxwell 35:39
10. Janie Grundling 35:49
Female Junior 10km
1. Simonay Weitsz (KPMG) 36:27
2. Yandiswa Shange (KPMG) 37:51
3. Carina Viljoen (KPMG) 37:56
1. Janie Grundling (Boxer) 35:49
2. Bulelwa Simae (Nedbank) 37:24
3. Poppy Mlambo (Boxer) 37:32
1. Tanith Maxwell (Boxer) 35:39
2. Ulrica Stander (FNB Multisport) 38:04
3. Janene Carey (Boxer) 39:03
1. Ansie Breytenbach (Irene) 44:22
2. Gail Babich (Savages) 47:11
3. Elize Cilliers 48:12
1. Sandra Fismer (Hilton Harriers) 46:25
2. Blanche Moila (Savages) 49:21
3. Sheree Kirsten (Westville) 51:24