On Sunday October 21, one of the Eastern Cape’s flagship compendium of road races, the Legends 68, 21.1 and 10km events, along with a 5km fun run take place.
The 68km starts at the Bhisho Stadium and follows the road to the N2 and then all the way down to East London, alighting onto the North East Express Way, down Buffalo Park Drive, onto the Esplanade to finish at the Orient Beach.
The 21,1km is run in the footsteps of many of South Africa’s greatest half marathon and indeed all round athletes.
The course is similar to the one that Mathews Temane and Zithulele Sinqe ran in 1987 when they bettered the then world best for the distance. They ran 60 minutes and 11 seconds, with Temane given the win by the line judge.
The route for Sunday is identical to the route used in 1991 when Elana Meyer set a World record of 67:59.
Neither of those times have ever been bettered in South Africa, try as many other cities have, in a pursuit to usurp East London’s title of “Half Marathon City.”
The 68km has over the years attracted both Comrades and Two Oceans exponents and with entries still open until Friday evening it is possible that a number of such runners may still enter and join the likes of multiple gold medallist in both those races, Mike Fokoroni from Zimbabwe
At the time of writing entries were still being “unpacked” but the trend was evident with the half marathon receiving the bulk of entries, followed by the 68 and 10km races.
One of the more interesting trends is the large percentage of female runners entering in the past week.
Prize money is good with both men’s and women’s winners of the 68km taking home R50 000, second in for R30 00, third R20 000 and the list going down to 10th place.
The half marathon has a first prize of R13 500 with R10 000 for second, R7 500 for third and also going through to R500 at 10th spot.
The 10k has five monetary places in the open category starting at R2000 and there are good age category prizes in all three events.
All three races start at 6a.m. with the fun run at 8a.m.
Entries can still be handed in at the Border athletics offices in Lowe Street, Vincent.