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THE TOP RUNNER

A behind the scenes look at South African athletics

 

'I want a huge PB at SA 21km' Mosiako turns attention to NMB Half Marathon after new 10km PB in CT

Written off by some as a nearly man, Thabang Mosiako is beginning to show the form he did when he took track and road by storm in 2017 and 2018. The 27-year old set a new 10km personal best when he finished Sunday's Absa RUN YOUR CITY CAPE TOWN 10k in 28:43 for ninth place. That performance was a third lifetime best set in a period of ten months where he has started to look like the runner he was when he won the SA 5000m title in 2017. Mosiako credits coach Mike Mbambani for

"I'm happy with my shape" - Edward Mothibi Comrades prep on track after winning FORTRESS REIT 21km

Edward Mothibi has sent a strong warning to anyone wishing to challenge him for this year's Comrades Marathon title. The Ultimate Human Race's defending champion has been in sublime form in 2022 winning the JP Morgan Corporate Challenge 5.6km race (17:13), placing third in 2:45:27 at the Nedbank Runified Breaking Barriers 50km in March and then winning yesterday's FORTRESS REIT Half Marathon. The ultra marathon specialist defeated former SA 21km champion Lucky Mohale to win t

'We identified a gap in rural areas' - Israel Morake on FORTRESS REIT SERIES

As running events return en masse around the country following a difficult two years for mass participation sport, one race organiser has decided to do things a bit differently now that the worst of the lockdown is behind us. ISMO Athletic Club which is the brainchild of Comrades Marathon gold medalist Isreal Morake and former Athletics South Africa board member Dorah Mngwevu, will host a road running series that is specifically targeted at South Africa's athletics starved r

Hollywoodbets AC rewards Mhlakwana with R50 000 for Totalsports Two Oceans second place

Running sensation Nkosikhona Mhlakwana is smiling all the way to the bank after receiving a cash incentive from his club, Hollywoodbets Athletics Club during a special event hosted on in Umhlanga, Durban yesterday. The luncheon was organised to celebrate the club's athletes who did wonders during the Totalsports Two Oceans Marathon last month in Cape Town. Mhlakwana, who came in position 2 in the 56km race, was awarded a cheque of R50 000 for his efforts. Speaking after recei

Munyai beats Makwala, Tshite downs Rotich and new 1500m PB for Sekgodišo in Gaborone

After beating Isaac Makwala for the second time in month, Clarence Munyai is feeling positive about the rest of 2022. The South African 200m national record holder (19.69) produced a measured performance as he won the men’s half lap event at the Gaborone International Meet in Botswana yesterday, which featured the Commonwealth 400m champion and hometown favourite Makwala. "It was quite nice to come out here and run in Botswana," he told #TheTopRunner. "The crowd was pretty ni

Melikhaya Frans wins NMB Motherwell Freedom 10km as WC Marathon preparation continues

For one who has been pigeonholed as a marathon athlete, Melikhaya Frans is showing more and more that he can mix it up with the best over the shorter distances too. In just the last year alone, the 32-year old has set four personal bests over 5000m, 10km, 12km and 15km. His 13:44.09 over twelve and a half laps of the Nelson Mandela Bay University track in February eclipsed the great Makhosonke Fika's pervious mark of 13:50, for a new Eastern Province Athletics (EPA) record. A

5km series in honour of Zola Budd 'withdrawn until further notice' - Moloi

Athletics South Africa president James Moloi has clarified the federation's position on a series of races which could be staged in honour of Zola Budd. On Wednesday #TheTopRunner reported that ASA was planning to rollout a series of 5km races in 2023, which would be named after the former 5000m world record holder. But following concerns from some quarters of the athletics community Moloi has shed further light on the story saying that nothing about the series has been finali

ASA to honour Zola Budd with national 5km series

Athletics South Africa (ASA) have revealed that they will celebrate one of the country's greatest running queens Zola Budd with the introduction of a 5km series in her honour next year. These races will be named after Budd and will carry handsome incentives similar to the Absa RUNYOURCITY series. Budd, who set broke the 5 000m world record back in 1985 when she ran 14:48.07, now works with Olympic silver medalist Elana Meyer at her running academy Endurocard, where the pair a

'I'm so happy with my performance' - Dream Two Oceans debut for Mhlakwana

Despite finishing as a runner-up in yesterday's Totalsports Two Oceans Marathon, Nkosikhona Mhlakwana feels proud of his performance in Cape Town. Going into the race with a 2:16:33 marathon personal best achieved in last year's Cape Town Marathon, Mhlakwana returned to the Mother City for the first time since last October aiming for a dream debut at the 56km ultra-marathon. The 28-year-old Hollywoodbets Athletic Club athlete employed a cautious approach early on, staying beh

Two Oceans Permit approved. Mokoka not running.

It's been a nervous few days for thousands of runners after news emerged that the Totalsports Two Oceans Marathon may not go ahead as planned this weekend, because the organisers did not have a permit. Several news sources reported that the world's most beautiful ultra marathon was under threat of cancellation following complaints from religious groups who questioned why the race and associated road closures had been given the green light to go ahead on the religious holiday

"I know I'll beat him" - Ferdinad Omanyala ahead of clash with Akani Simbine in Germiston tonight

"I'm going to run my race because I know I'll beat him." These are Ferdinand Omanyala's words ahead of tonight's hotly anticipated clash against Akani Simbine. After running a new African 100m record of 9.77 last September, Omanyala will take on the man whose record he broke over the 100m at the ASA Grand Prix Series World Challenger Tour meet at the Germiston Stadium tonight. And the Kenyan believes that he can run even faster than he won the 100m in 10.11 ahead of Clarence

"I want to defend my Two Oceans title" - Gelant ready to face Mokoka and Mokgobu in TOM 21km

After being the only South African man to finish last year's Olympic Marathon (2:16:43), Elroy Gelant says he wants to focus on the shorter distances again for a while. That 34th place finish in hot and humid conditions in Sapporo (800km north of Tokyo) took it's toll on the 35-year old who told #TheTopRunner that he is unlikely to race 42km in 2022. It means that one of his main aims for the year is to do well over the half marathon distance which begins with winning the Tot

Kabelo Seboko announces return from injury with win at CGA Champs 5000m

For one as talented as he, the last two years have been difficult to endure for Kabelo Seboko. While his training partner Precious Mashele and Durban-based Mbuleli Mthanga stole the headlines with their energizing performances in 2021, the 24-year old has been forced to watch from sidelines as he battled one injury after the other. But the man from Alexandra township is getting back to his best and announced his return by winning the Central Gauteng Athletics 5000m title this

'I want the academy to be the best in the country in the next 5 years' - Prodigal Khumalo

Anyone who happened to be born in the townships and rural areas of Southern Africa before 1994, will tell you what a special and rare occasion it was to have a birthday party. While commonplace now, many middle-aged black South Africans will tell you that they were only fortunate enough to celebrate their birthday once they were adults. This was Prodigal Khumalo's experience as well. Born on the 4th of March 1982 in Zimbabwe, The Comrades Marathon Gold medalist never got to b

Nkangala AA boss Mabaso praises Phantane's Mdu Khumalo for donation of new tracksuits

When it comes to developing future champions, few do it better than Emmanuel Mabaso. So committed is the coach from Mpumalanga to discovering and training young athletes that he has taken on the nickname Shaper, for his tireless work in shaping junior runners. Once identified in the Middleburg township of Mhluzi and its surrounds, the athletes of Nkangala Athletic Academy go on to bigger and better. "It is a gift given to me by God to work with kids, to guide and mentor them

"My mom told me to dig deep" - Taylon Bieldt after winning 400mH thriller against van der Walt & Nel

So exciting was the action delivered at last night's ASA Grand Prix Series meet that it took multiple slow motion replays and a photo finish to determine the winner of not one, but two races. The scores who had packed into the PUK McArthur Stadium in Potchefstroom for the third track and field meet of five, were first treated to a men's 800m in which Botswana's Tshepiso Masilela only just managed to stave off Jabulane Ncamane's challenge over the last 60 metres to win by two

Distance junkies line up to enter 400km Icon's Journey Marathon to raise funds for school kids

After raising hundreds of thousands of Rands to support over 2000 rural and township school pupils across the country with school shoes, uniforms, and sanitary pads last year, organisers of the Icon's Journey Marathon are at it again. Since 2018, the annual 8-day run and ride has been taking place in the Eastern Cape to celebrate the towns and hamlets that produced the national and international struggle icons such as Nelson Mandela, Walter Sisulu and Thabo Mbeki. In 2021 the

"Running comes from the heart" - The secret to Mabhutile Lebopo's ageless success

At 46-years old Mabhutile Lebopo is at an age where most athletes are reminiscing about the glory days of bygone victories. Yet the winner of the 2010 Two Oceans ultra marathon is still looking ahead to the future, especially after an encouraging performance at yet another ultra marathon earlier this month. Although Stephen Mokoka took most of the plaudits for setting a new world record at the Nedbank Breaking Barriers 50km on the 6th of March, the man from Lesotho took 4th p

"The aim wasn't to chase Ryan. The aim was to run my splits," says Tshite after deposing King Ryan

While it was Caster Semenya’s sub 9 minute run that received top billing, it was the men’s 1500m race that delivered the goods during the second ASA Grand Prix Series Meet at the Greenpoint Stadium in Cape Town last night. Semenya set the tone early in the meet, running behind training partner Glenrose Xaba for much of the race before taking the lead to win the women’s 3000m in a new personal best time of 8:54.97. And after that performance the stage was set for an epic duel

'I love the opportunities' - Nthatisi Mokhele believes SA has a lot of Race Walking talent

Despite the fact that team South Africa failed to bag a medal at the World Athletics Race Walking Team Championships in Oman a fortnight ago, there was much to celebrate. Wayne Snyman's 7th place finish out of 56 athletes in the men's 20km underlined his status as a world class athlete, while a young lady from one of the toughest townships in the country showed that athletics is still a powerful vehicle to change one's life. Born and bred in Orange Farm south of Johannesburg

 

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