The 42-year-old Pauline Njeya’s (Kovsies) preparations to finish among the top women in her age category (40 – 49-years) at the Two Oceans Ultra Marathon (56km) are bang on target.
The tiny Free State senior women marathon record holder produced the best performance at the annual Bloemfontein Achilles and Kloppers marathon road race meeting where approximately 1000 athletes took to the streets of the City of Roses.
Njeya, who targeted a 3:15 time beforehand, clocked a good time of 3:11:26 to finish first overall among the women in the marathon race (42,2 km). According to the provisional results, she finished sixth overall, men included.
Do-Jo Jordaan (Pentagon Pistols), who took part in the age category for women 40 – 49-years) came in second overall, more than 22 minutes behind Njeya. Jordaan recorded 3:34:13 and was closely followed by Yolandi van Heerden (Nedbank Fast Legs, 3:34:23).
The race for men was pedestrian. Former South African participant at the world cross-country championships, Pule Hlabahlaba (Mangaung AC), took honours in 2:48:21. It was, however, an interesting battle for gold as second placed Mosala Dipheko (Harmony Striders, 2:48:22) crossed the line only one second behind Hlabahlaba. Jaco Ebersohn (Bloemfontein Striders, 3:00:25) was third.
The half marathon (21,1 km) for men and women did not produce world class times either. Anastacius Ontong (Eskom) looked at ease when he reigned victorious in a slow 1:11:11 to beat Zwene Moreng (Eskom, 1:11:49). Tshidiso Tsolo (1:12:08) crossed the line in third place.
Anna Moeketsi (By Grace AC) won the half marathon for women in 1:29:02 with her closest rival, Mokulo Bete (Mangaung AC, 1:39:41) more than 10 minutes adrift. Tara-Lea van Zyl (Kovsies, 2:39:51) finished third overall.
The 10 km for men was won by Simon Sibeko in 31:27, a time which is not something to write home about.
The results mentioned above are all provisional and were received from the electronic time keeping officials. After numerous attempts, Courant could not obtain the official results. – RUFUS BOTHA