More than 2 700 runners from as far as Gauteng entered the fifth annual Polokwane Municipality Mayoral Road Race staged at the old Peter Mokaba Stadium on Saturday.
The event, organised by Polokwane Municipality in collaboration with Polokwane Athletics Club, saw professional and amateur runners partaking in the 21,1 or 10 km races and 5 km fun run.
The big winners on the day were Desmond Mokgobi from Boxer Athletics Club who won the 21,1 km men’s open race in a time of 1:04.52. He received R10 000 in prize money and a gold medal.
In the 21,1 km women’s open race Louisa Leballo from Transnet Athletics Club stood a cut above the rest when she won the race in a time of 1:17.03. For her achievement she received R10 000 and a gold medal.
Steven Mokoka from Transnet Athletic Club won the men’s 10 km open race in a time of 30:40. He took home R5 000 and a gold medal and so did Zimbabwean Constance Nyasanyo who won the women’s
10 km category in a time of 35:48.
There were also junior, open, veterans, masters, grand masters and great-grand masters categories for both male and female.
Executive Mayor of Polokwane, Thembi Nkadimeng said she was happy with the turnout and also appreciated the commitment shown by the athletes. “Last year we had 1 700 participants in the event. We are happy to have surpassed the figure this year and that shows the growth of the event,” Nkadimeng said.
She also stressed that the city is proud to announce that this race has found its place in the South African athletics calendar and it is part of Limpopo Athletics Association and Athletics South Africa activities. “The race has been rising from strength to strength since its launch in 2011. From next year the race will be a qualifying leg for the Comrades Marathon,” Nkadimeng said.