The annual Marakele Marathon hosted by South African National Parks (SANParks) in partnership with the South African National Parks Honorary Rangers and Thabazimbi Marathon Club on Saturday raised R260 000 for conservation.
Divhani Maremba, SANParks Regional Communications Manager said Northern Region Coca-Cola Beverages South Africa donated the money which will help in the upgrading of Environmental Education Facilities in the Park and the general maintenance of the park.
Phineus Mothoa and Zanie van Rensburg, both from Thabazimbi Marathon Club, beat over 600 runners to the finish line in the
42 km men’s and women’s races respectively. Mothoa completed the distance in a time of 2:32:55 while Van Rensburg’s time was 3:49:11.
Addressing the winners and guests during the prize giving ceremony, Lombard Shirindzi, General Manager of Northern Region Parks reportedly said the objective of the marathon was to give back to the community of Thabazimbi but that SANParks also sought to use the marathon as a catalyst to attain socio-economic development and environmental protection.
“This was the best event yet since the inception of the marathon seven years ago simply because of the atmosphere that was created. We want people to enjoy the national parks and make them a place of rest, and therefore over and above the official races we make sure that we provide fun for the whole family, and extend the invitation to everyone who is yet to visit Marakele and any of our national parks to come and have fun,” Shirindzi was quoted to have said.
Shirindzi thanked Coca-Cola Beverages South Africa for the sponsorship that had contributed significantly towards the success of the race.
Story: Herbert Rachuene