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  • Writer's pictureMatshelane Mamabolo

'I would love to run a 2:15' - Mzazi aims for new PB at Cape Town Marathon

GLADWIN MZAZI believes it is about time he improved on his marathon Personal Best (PB) and he is looking to do just that at the Sanlam Cape Town Marathon on Sunday (October 17). Mzazi boasts a 2:17:43 PB which he ran back in 2014 during the Fukuoka Marathon in Japan and the Boxer Athletic Club star admitted to #TheTopRunner that he is long overdue an improved time.

“It is time to run a new PB,” he said this week. “I am fast approaching veteran status (40 years plus) and I would love to run a 2:15 before I become a madala,” the 33-year-old athlete laughs. Achieve that target and Mzazi will realize his goal of gaining qualification for next year’s Commonwealth Games that are set for Birmingham, England in July/August next year.

That though is but the minimum target for the two-time Universiade (World Student Games) gold medalist in the 10000m and half marathon. He has loftier ambitions than just posting a PB on Sunday.

Mzazi alongside 2019 Comrades Marathon champion Edward Mothibi during the 2020 Sanlam Cape Town Marathon in Potchefstroom, which was modified to an elite time trial because of the Covid-19 restrictions around mass gatherings. Photo Credit: Rhyn Swanepoel.

“I will be happy with a 64/65 minutes run in the first half (21.1km) and then thereafter I will try to run the full distance under 2:11:30 which will get me a World Championship spot in Team South Africa. That’s the ultimate goal. But realistically I will be happy with anything under 2:15,” shares Mzazi who placed second at the Central Gauteng Athletics 30km Time Trial in early September.

Mzazi believes that the goals he has set himself are achievable because he has put in the hard work and is now merely just waiting for Sunday. “Everything is done. I am just taking it easy and ensuring I stay healthy until race day. I ran 15km in Port Elizabeth as a way to check my readiness and I was happy to have done it in 44 minutes. So I know that the speed is there. And the mileage is enough as well,” explains the man who has done much of his speed training under the watchful eye of Lungile Bikwani who leads the Soweto Kenyans group.

He is a little concerned though that there would be no pacemakers at this year’s race given the Covid-19 restrictions. “It just means we are going to have to run sensibly without the help of the pacemakers. Previously I made the mistake of going with the first bunch that ran at too fast a pace and I pulled a hamstring. I won’t make that mistake again this time.”

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