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  • Writer's pictureMosibodi Whitehead

'I think top 10 is on the cards' - Adele Broodryk ready for Comrades after second place at N12 Ultra

With the continuing uncertainty over whether or not Up-Run record holder Gerda Steyn will take part in this year's Comrades Marathon, her likely absence from the start line leaves the women's race wide open. Amongst the favourites for a gold medal is Adele Broodryk who followed up her victory at the Om Die Dam 50km in June, with a second place finish during yesterday's North West N12 Ultra Marathon.

"Great run! I'm very happy about my run that I did," she told #TheTopRunner on the finish line at the Klerksdorp Recreation Centre just after running from neighbouring Potchefstroom in the first edition of the point-to-point 50km race. "It was a really fast and flat route, so it was a really nice course. I went out for a thorough tempo run to test the fitness for Comrades. So I'm really happy about the run."

Broodryk tests the Comrades route ahead of her first Comrades. Photo Credit: SmacPix.

A 3:23:48 clocking at the hilly Om Die Dam 50km and yesterday's second place behind Ethiopia's Lakech Girma of the Nedbank Running Club, have come as a result of the hard work that the Health Sciences senior lecturer at the North West University in Potchefstroom has put in over the last decade. Over the last 12 months alone, the Murray and Roberts Running Club top runner has set new personal bests over various distances from 10km to the marathon including an impressive 34:49 during the Durban leg of the SPAR Grand Prix in June.

"I've been building my base for ten years now, always thinking that this particular year when I turn 30 then I'll do it [Comrades]. So I've really been working on building a very large foundation. I've had such a great year with my running with my speed work especially. They say your first one is always your best one so I'm so looking forward to run that and just to take everything in. There's no pressure as it is my first one. I'm just gonna go out and enjoy the day," explained the woman who set a 2:47 marathon lifetime best during the 2021 Sanlam Cape Town Marathon.

Broodryk running shoulder to shoulder with Comrades Marathon Donw Run record holder David Gatebe on her way to winning the Om Die Dam 50km Ultra Marathon in June. Photo Credit: SmaxPix.

Having turned 30 in 2020, the 31-year-old didn't have an opportunity to run in 2020 or last year because of the Covid-enforced race cancellation. It means that she will run the 90km from Pietermaritzburg to Durban for the first time on the 28th of August. And so good is the current form that she enjoys, that Broodryk is not content with just completing her first attempt at the Ultimate Human Race - she's going for gold especially after having tested the route a week ago.

"We started on the top of Polly Shorts and then going all the way down. It was great for me because hills aren't always my best, but I've really been focusing on hill training quite a lot. I can't wait. I'm counting down the sleeps. I always thought that for my first Comrades I just wanna finish but I think top 10 or top 5 hopefully is on the cards. I'm gonna go out and race my strategy which is to run a tactical race and if there's 10km left and I have to open the throttle then I'm gonna do that," she explained."

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