One last burst for run­ners

Daily Dispatch - - Sport - BOB NOR­RIS

The sec­ond run­ning of the XPE 15km road race in Mdantsane on Sun­day has run­ners ready for one last 2018 burst.

It is not ex­actly a walk in the park. It will be a real test but the pre­dic­tion of rain does at least in­di­cate cooler con­di­tions.

The hills and val­leys of Real Gi­ji­mas' hunt­ing ground can be se­ri­ously test­ing at this time of year with high hu­mid­ity and se­ri­ous tem­per­a­tures.

Men's run­ning has been sadly pre­dictable, but with an ex­pec­ta­tion of run­ners from as far afield as Cape Town, Port Elizabeth and Mthatha the race could well be livened up.

What this means is that the trio of the host club's Luthando He­jana, Bule­lani Mgubo of All Stars and Old Sel­bor­nian Masixole Kali­deni will come un­der the scru­tiny of vis­i­tors, hun­gry to take the spoils back with them.

The women's race will still be with­out Easy Eq­ui­ties Born2Run's Han­lie Botha, but ex­pect her to come on strong at the Jan­uary races, hav­ing moved up into a new cat­e­gory, but still chal­leng­ing up front.

Caryn Late­gan and Lau­ren Ranger will also not be in the field, while there has been no word of Stephanie Smith's in­ten­tions.

The women's race will be any­thing but dour how­ever, with the tough as teak An­drea Ranger chas­ing an im­prove­ment on her fourth po­si­tion of last year.

Ranger will be up against the Sch­wulst sis­ters, Cindy and Tara, both of whom are also in the Born2run squad.

Cindy has not raced in a while, but is vastly ex­pe­ri­enced, while Tara won the Xerox 10km Light­en­ing Fast in Novem­ber. She has never raced over any­thing longer than 10km, but is said to be in great shape.

Again a few top class vis­i­tors can mix things up quite nicely and keep the spec­ta­tors guess­ing.

Through­out the age cat­e­gories com­pe­ti­tion will be tight with races go­ing down to the wire.

Ex­pect one big race in the men's 50+ cat­e­gory with the in­form Desmond Zibi of Achilles AC in Port Elizabeth up again an old ri­val in Makaya Ma­sumpa of Born 2 Run.

Pic­ture: MARK AN­DREWS

READY TO RUN: Real Gi­ji­mas ath­letes pic­tured at the 68km Le­gends Marathon.

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