Monday, 13 March 2017 20:40

Of Om Die Dam 2017 participation and pacing at GSRC

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Following late on the conversation about running together at marathons....Sadly we don't have the numbers that match most clubs in SA to run in packs, but I must say though, I noticed a lot of us continue to work together in these marathons. Small clutters but the team work is certainly there.

I was at the start line with Stefan and Alison. Last year I ran 32kms with Stefan at an even pace of 6'10. We quickly chatted about race plan and he asked of my target and I told him somewhere between 4:50 and 5:10. As he had been on injury he committed to trying for 5:10 and said he would follow me.

I started out on a gruesome 4km with Ali who was on a quest to her first ultra and also happened to be in Africa. Alison meandered through the crowd as I trailed behind. Sho! The girl runs?

We saw the duo; Phatshimo and Kagiso, partners in running and long time friends. Though they stuck together most of the time we suspect that they started separating as the heat intensified. Phatshimo has come a long way to successfully complete his first ultra wife and sister waiting at the finish line. Kagiso came in later, elated and the latest conquest.

We went past another duo, Thero and Emmanuel as they took to the challenge together. It's also worth noting that these two have been training together on most of their long runs. Thero that's great mentoring example and your results showed the great work you put in together. For Emmanuel it was his first ultra. Thero was there last year for his first. Redemption was done in style this year.

We saw Zu enjoying her solo run.

Sech enjoyed a solo run not far ahead of the trio Ben C, Seleke and Jox.

Ben C, Seleke, Jox of whom I joined briefly tackling the monster as I fought a knotting shin, enjoyed a very good pace filled with jokes and laughter. We ran a good 7k-ish together before sub 5 and sub 5:30 buses interrupted up us. We passed Ben B enjoying his solo race and did our health checks and offered each other advice. The trio kept reminding me to push on once I'm recovered.

I caught up with Mercy at 26 and we spoke briefly before Mel caught up. I proceeded with Mel who is by far the queen of hills. I stayed on the Mel bus for a while and admired how Mellie crushed those those hills. With her BW tutu donned she simply balleted up those hills. As approached the plus 32's I could not keep up and released Mel to go for her long overdue PB. She never stopped and she went to finish a strong sub.

I battled the Saartjie finding courage and motivation from the fact that I had to run away from the sun 5 bus behind me. Once Saartjie was conquered I just rolled down the hill, finish line on my mind. There I found Coach, Mellie waiting and we joined Ali, Mouza, NNyana, Kanane, Gale, Bonang, Ona and Neo while we waited and enjoyed the fresh battle stories until the last Strider arrived.

We learn at each race and I believe in time we would perfect our logistics surrounding the start to finish of races.

A job well done Striders. To the team that remained, you held the fort and continued to keep things going and we have no doubt you enjoyed the run.- words by Shirley Mosiakgabo

Last modified on Thursday, 27 April 2017 14:38
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