The official launch of the 2013 Ultimate Human Race echoed it’s awe-inspiring slogan – ‘U are ultraordinary!’ The exciting 88th Comrades Marathon campaign unveiling saw the nation’s top runners, sporting personalities and media converge on Johannesburg for this auspicious occasion on Wednesday, 29 August 2012.
In maintaining the accomplishments of this year’s phenomenal event, the Comrades Marathon Association (CMA) is all set for another magnificent showdown for next year’s race, come Sunday, 2 June 2013. Being an ‘up-run’, the start gun will fire off outside Durban’s City Hall at 05h30 and go off again 12 hours later at Pietermaritzburg’s Cricket Oval to signal the finish of the 86.9km road-running challenge.
Spring Day on 1 September 2012 brings with it the official opening of entries for the 2013 edition. The entry period closes on 30 November 2012 or as soon as the cap of 18000 entries has been reached. Prospective entrants are encouraged to get their entries in early so as to not be left disappointed.
The CMA has once again catered generously for its South African runners who will be eligible for the ‘early bird’ entry fee of R300 (the same cost as in 2012) if their entry is received by 30 September 2012. The new increased entry fee of R320 will kick in on 1 October 2012 until the entry process is closed. Runners from the Rest of Africa will be charged an entry fee of R500 and the cost to International athletes is $US180.
Other great news for runners is that the Substitution Rule, approved for implementation in 2012 by the CMA, is part and parcel of the 2013 Comrades entry process. This will apply for the month of April 2013 and more details may be found online at www.comrades.com
The entry requirements, which are clearly indicated on the entry form, must be strictly complied with at all times or runners may risk losing their place at the Start.
Runners may enter as follows:
- online via the Comrades Marathon website: www.comrades.com;
- at Mr Price Sport, Home and Clothing stores countrywide;
- through the post by posting the completed entry form with proof of payment to the CMA Office in Pietermaritzburg: P.O. Box 100621, Scottsville, 3209;
- Comrades Marathon House: by handing in the completed entry form together with payment at the CMA office in Pietermaritzburg.
- Please note that the CMA office will be open from 08h00 to 12h00 on the first day of the entry process – Saturday, 1 September 2012.
- Qualifying details must be submitted to the CMA by 6 May 2013.
Over the years, the CMA has prioritized charitable giving via its Amabeadibeadi charities platform. The driving force behind this is the desire to give back to the less fortunate in our country.
The 2012 Comrades Marathon was proof once again that the interest in improving the South African social and environmental landscape is a major priority for Comrades runners, sponsors and supporters in general.
A record amount of nearly R3.2million was generated in 2012 through a range of charitable fundraising initiatives by the CMA, its sponsors and the respective charities as opposed to R1.8million in 2011. Naturally, the CMA intends to build on this people-friendly platform in the run-up to the 2013 race.
Runners and supporters will once again be urged to embrace the spirit of being ultraordinary in the many ways that they know how; and to contribute to Amabeadibeadi and its Race4Charity Drive. After all, being ultraordinary goes hand in hand with what the Comrades Marathon epitomizes in terms of sharing, caring and promoting cooperation and goodwill.
Six worthy charities, namely Community Chest of Durban and Pietermaritzburg, Pink Drive, The Sports Trust, Starfish-Greathearts Foundation, Wildlands Conservation Trust and World Vision South Africa benefit from Amabeadibeadi’s fundraising initiatives.
The charities’ focus are on such issues as community development, care for the aged, health and wellness, AIDS care and support, the environment and sports development; and through the Amabeadibeadi Charity Drive, gain invaluable resources to bring the intended meaningful change to marginalized communities across South Africa.
Further to that, the CMA puts the humanity into The Ultimate Human Race by making the dreams of approximately 800 disadvantaged runners a reality every year. For over a decade, the Underprivileged Runners Programme has provided resources and moral support to these runners who would normally be unable to compete in the world’s biggest and oldest ultra-marathon and relish in the camaraderie and enjoyment associated with it.
CMA Chairman, Peter Proctor says: ‘We are very pleased and excited about our 2013 Comrades campaign. There is no doubt in our minds that every single Comrades runner is ultraordinary and lends a unique feature to South Africa’s most famous road-running race. It is these extra-special attributes of our runners that make The Ultimate Human Race all the more touching and a true people-centred event.’
Proctor adds, ‘The ever-growing accomplishments of Amabeadibeadi are a source of great pride and a huge sense of achievement for us all at the CMA. It is our determination that we utilize the Comrades brand to full measure and make a positive difference to the lives of those in need. We are grateful to our generous runners, sponsors, partners and supporters who contribute to these important endeavours and uphold the esteemed status of the Comrades Marathon. We greatly anticipate another amazing race in 2013!’
It is worth noting that the Comrades Marathon is a Guinness World Record (GWR) holder for having the most finishers in an ultra-marathon, as endorsed by GWR in 2010. The iconic race also enjoys its prestige as the current winner of the Virgin Active Sport Industry Awards for ‘Sport Participation Event of the Year’.