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  • Writer's pictureMosibodi Whitehead

CMA urges more runners to join and have a say in Comrades decision-making. Deadline - 30 June

Whether its debates over the cutoff times or concerns over the use of the logo, one thing has come out clearly in the lead up to the 2024 Comrades Marathon, more opinions are needed in the months before the race in order to reach consensus and avoid endless public dialogue during the stressful last few weeks before the big day. And barring a nationwide (indeed global) post-race consultative process, one way to ensure that more brains are picked in the annual cycle is for the legions of Comrades keyboard warriors to join the Comrades Marathon Association.

Join the CMA to be involved in the decision-making of the organisation. Photo Credit: CMA Media.

"The Comrades Marathon Association is the best pet secret. I only found out about it 13 years after running my first Comrades," explains David Ashworth in a short YouTube video targeted at recruiting the thousands of runners who take part in the race annually to join the 173-member organisation that governs the World’s Most Loved and Oldest Ultra Marathon.

"This is very sad considering members considering that there are almost 22 and a half thousand entires for Comrades this year alone. The leadership and the future of the Comrades Marathon is firmly in the hands of the CMA Members. It means that only 173 have a say. As a CMA Member you have the opportunity to vote in board meetings each year, you receive the financial figures each year and you can make proposals on the future on the race and you can provide feedback to the CMA Board Members."

Mashimane joined the CMA and was recently added to the board. Photo Credit: Supplied.

One recent addition to the CMA and its board is Nontuthuko Mashimane. A nutritionist and wellness expert by profession and owner of six Comrades medals, Mashimane believes that she is ideally positioned to contribute positively to the sport that she loves by sharing her knowledge and experience in a way that will elevate the annual running pilgrimage. That is why she decided to join the CMA and what's more, this year she was voted in to the CMA Board.

"It is both a honour and a privilege to be apart of the great organisation, I think especially as a black women. At the same time there is a great sense of duty that comes over me as my mind and heart are focused on how I can be of service to the Comrades as a organisation as well as to all the Comrades Marathon participants. I’m passionate about the sport and especially the Comrades brand and I have a deep rooted belief that in some shape or form,I can truly add value and make a difference within the running space."

To be eligible to be a CMA Member you must be 18 years or older, you either need to be an active, long-standing or retired Comrades runner or you need to be a Comrades volunteer. "You must subscribe to the objectives of the CMA, it’s constitution and it’s values. The deadline for this year’s applications is the 30th of June. You can apply online and pay the R100 fee before this date," says Ashworth.

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