Roro and Hall are frontrunners to retain Winelands Marathon titles
ONE of the Cape’s oldest road races will get underway in Stellenbosch early this morning, with the 38th running of the Vital Winelands Marathon through the vineyards and strawberry fields between Stel- lenbosch and Somerset West.
The Winelands Half Marathon, appropriately this year exactly half the age of the original marathon in its 19th edition, was expected to fill the streets with mass movement and colour.
Beginning with a loop through historic Stellenbosch, the route takes participants out of the town and past Spier Wine Farm, before turning left into Annandale Road. Runners then follow an out and back loop along the R44 before finishing at the Eikestad Primary School in Stellenbosch.
The list of past race winners boasts some of South Africa’s best ever marathoners, including Johnny Halberstadt (inaugural winner in 1978), Vincent Rakabaele, Thompson Magawana and Willie Afrika. The open records are held by Mluleki Nobanda ( 2: 18: 47 in 1996) and Isavel Roche-Kelly (2:42:27 in 1980).
Last year’s winners, Wanda Roro and Candyce Hall are expected to defend their titles, while strong SA Defence Force provincial teams are likely to pose a threat.
Meanwhile, two high-profile road races open for entries this weekend.
The third and final wave of online entries for the Old Mutual Two Oceans Half Marathon opens at 10am today, while entries for the FNB Cape Town ONERUN 12km go on sale tomorrow.