RWFL Comrades 2011

Run/Walk For Life Gtown at Comrades

 A PB for Jene
This year's Comrades Marathon attracted 19 592 (4 380 women) entries, and the Comrades Marathon Association closed entries at the end of last year. And so it could be expected that many athletes withdraw from the race before it even began, as many people enter thinking they have plenty of time to train. Until the actual training begins and many leave the training to late.
Many athletes also pulled out of the race for various reasons, which saw 11 374 (2 274 women) runners finishing this year's Comrades Marathon, which included a handful of runners from Grahamstown.
This year's Comrades was an up run, starting in Durban and finishing in Pietermaritzburg.
Jene Banfield of Run/Walk For Life Athletics Club had the most impressive run of all local athletes as she finished in 8:37:08, only ten minutes behind the first local finisher home. Jene took four minutes off her previous Comrades best which she set at last year's down Comrades. She was also the third Eastern Province women home. This was Jene's fourth Comrades and second Bill Rowan medal (the medal earned for finishing between 8 hours and nine hours.
Jene said that while she had not planned to run a Bill Rowan time, she set out at just under six minutes per kilometre for the first half. By 20km to go the pain began to set in and she realised she needed to “vasbyt” to the end and “with the grace of God” she finished with a personal best time.
Kevin Rafferty (Run/Walk For Life) said he was “happy to have got to run and to finish,” adding that he was not going to run “as I had aggravated an injury a month before Comrades, so I only managed six short training runs over the last four weeks. It is a really tough event, tests every part of your body and mind. So I have now completed a “down” and an “up” run – that is probably it for me. Time for a new challenge,” said Kevin.
Results of Run/Walk For Life Athletics Club EP members at Comrades:
Jene Banfield (Run/Walk For Life Athletics Club) 8:37:08
Mlamli Klaas (Run/Walk For Life) 9:15:00
Kevin Rafferty (Run/Walk For Life) 10:34:10.