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  • Writer's pictureMosibodi Whitehead

'Looking forward to running personal bests' - Mashele to race Absa GQEBERHA 10K

After setting a national record of 27:35 when he finished second behind Kenya's Daniel Ebenyo during last year's inaugural race, all eyes will be on Precious Mashele ahead of the second edition of the Absa RUN YOUR CITY GQEBERHA 10K. The multiple SA Champion has confirmed that he will be returning to The Friendly City as he aims to run even faster than he did in 2023.

"I love the atmosphere of the Absa RUN YOUR CITY Series. There are lots of top runners and social runners who encourage us when we run. I have good memories because I won in Durban in 2021 and I ran a national record in Gqeberha last year. The plan is to run faster than last year," he said.

Precious Mashele sets a national record of 27:35 at the inaugural Absa RUN YOUR CITY GQEBERHA 10K in 2023. Photo Credit: Tobias Ginsberg.

Apart from his participation in Gqeberha, the man who will represent South Africa over 5000m at the upcoming African Games in Ghana says that the entire Absa RUN YOUR CITY Series of races (there are five events in total) will form an important part of his overall 2024 season.

“I would like to thank Stillwater Sports (the organisers of the Absa RUN YOUR CITY Series) for giving us the opportunity to race again. These races help us to run fast times. We’re happy because the series is here again in 2024, and we are looking forward to running personal bests. Running in the Olympics will help me run fast at the Absa RUN YOUR CITY Series races. If I qualify for the Olympics it will give me an advantage when I run the Absa races,” he explained.

Mashele at #Tokyo2021. He is aiming to return to the Olympic Games in Paris later this year and will use the Absa RUN YOUR CITY Series as part of his Olympic preparation. Photo Credit: Supplied.

While Mashele leads the South African charge at the first Absa RUN YOUR CITY Series race of the year, there will once again be a strong East African contingent. In the women’s race, Kenya’s Nancy Sang will lineup at the start on Beach Road. Better known as a steeplechaser with an impressive personal best of 9:56.0 set at altitude in the Kenyan capital of Nairobi in 2018, Sang intends to use the 2024 Absa RUN YOUR CITY Series to launch her international career as a road runner.

“I feel happy and glad to be part of the race. Although it will be my first time, I know it’s an important event in Africa where good performances have been made in past years. It is the right time to venture into road running. I had a good 10km debut of 31:09 but now I want more. I am preparing well for the Absa RUN YOUR CITY GQEBERHA 10K. If conditions are good, the goal is to break the 31-minute barrier,” said Sang of her inclusion in the 2024 Absa RUN YOUR CITY GQEBERHA 10K start-list.

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