Comrades ’19: Best Quotes From The Elite Press Conference
On Friday morning, the elite runners vying for the podium attended the Comrades Marathon Press Conference. The top athletes had some inspiring and motivational quotes to share before tackling their race on Sunday.
Ann Ashworth: “Last year there was one person who thought I could win, no-one thought I had a hope in hell – myself included. The one thing that last year taught me, is that you never know where it’s coming from and who is coming from behind.”
“I think the ladies race is going to be unbelievable, there are a lot of strong name. The best way you can line up for Comrades is humble and terrified, the worst way is arrogant and expectant. And I am certainly terrified! Terror worked for me last year.”
“It’s my last Comrades, I’m done with this ultra stuff after this.”
Gerda Steyn: “This year is going to be very exciting! My preparation has gone really well, I was lucky enough to spend some time away in the French Alps training. I think it’s going to be a very fast race, last year the racing started very early on and I think we can expect the same this year.
It’s a great time to be an athlete and to be racing Comrades!”
I’m so happy to be here after last year, I strained my leg doing a YouTube exercise! I’m very grateful to be here and to be defending my Up run title.
Camille Herron: “There’s a race going on? I actually came for Bruce’s after party! To win Comrades was my number one life goal. Coming back this time I feel really relaxed and rested. If I can try win it twice or three times, it would be the icing on the cake for me!”
“I’d be really happy to run faster this year than 2017. I’m a lot fitter and healthier this year, and I’m just going to give it my all.”
Charne Bosman: “It’s so nice to be here and be healthy. Looking forward, I’m feeling good so we’ll see what happens on Sunday! I’ve done a lot less races this year, so Comrades has been my main goal.”
Danette Smith: “2017 was a bit of a fairy tale run for me, and that’s where the love of the race started for me. I learnt the most lessons from that race, and have used it in the build up to this year’s race. This year I have done a lot of races as part of my training.
It is a daunting starting line, but likely the most amazing start line. It’s such a special memory that doesn’t get old.
Jenna Challenor: “As a novice, it’s an absolute honour to be sitting amongst these incredible athletes. It’s a brutal course, but an exciting course!”
“Last year Camille and I started chatting, and she has offered great advice to me.”
Fikile Mbuthuma: “I only started training just before Two Oceans, but I am fit and strong and ready for Sunday. I’m not wanting to beat anyone, they must try and beat me!”
Chrissie Wellington (English former professional triathlete and four-time Ironman Triathlon World Champion): “My life has taken me many twists and turns, and it’s so humbling to be here and to race this iconic race. Psychologically the strategies are the same as Ironman. I’ll be digging deep and reaching into the psychological well on Sunday! This is the longest running event I’ve ever done, but I’m excited and proud to be running in amongst 25,000 other people!”
— Camille Herron (@runcamille) June 7, 2019
Steven Way: “I was surprised last year when I crossed the finish line as I thought I was fifth, not third! It was a special day. 2017 was my first Comrades, I was quite scared, but I think I can be more adventurous this year, but I don’t want to blow it in the first half. I’m really excited to hit the start line on Sunday.
Hatiwande Nyamande: It’s tough, but I am aiming for first position! I’m feeling strong, and my preparations went 100% well.
Teboho Sello: “I’m going to run my own race, anyone who has worked harder than me will be in front of me. I’m strong enough in the mind, and can punish them there. The mind takes 75%, and the body is 25%.”
Sage Canaday: “Comrades is the greatest ultra marathon in the world. It’s a great honour to be here. I’ve been here for a couple of days and am well rested, so I will not use travel time as an excuse. Experience does help a lot, and if I was a betting man, I’d expect a South African man to win. The people is really what makes this race so special.”
Gordon Lesedi: “I’m feeling very excited for Sunday, and I cannot wait to change my position and my time in which I run the race in. I want to run 5:34.”
Bongmusa Mthembu: “It’s nice to see the young guys coming to run Comrades. I’ve been running this race for 13 years. It’s important to know how to prepare and how to run Comrades. It’s not about who I am going to chase, you must run your own race. Mentally, you have to be prepared, this is where experience comes.