Town - Elite runners in the 2017 Two Oceans
Ultra Marathon will once again be racing towards a large incentive.
In addition to the prize money that will be won, title sponsor Old Mutual
has also put a R1 million bonus prize on the table for the first male and
female to break the respective Ultra records.
“The Old Mutual Two Oceans Marathon is a highlight on the South African
running and social calendar,” says Karen Thomas, Head of Brand at Old
“It's a massive event that continues to grow and what really
elevated the race to another level was the bonus incentive we introduced
for the runners who break the record.”
The R1 million bonus was first introduced to the Ultra Marathon ahead of
the 2014 event, which sparked new motivation among elite runners to break
the records originally set by Thompson Magawana and Frith van der
Magawana set the men’s record of 3:03:44 in
1988, while Van der Merwe set the women’s record a year later in 1989
when she ran 3:30:36.
The closest any runner has come since then is Zimbabwean
Marko Mambo, who ran 3:05:39 in 2005. Russian Olesya Nurgalieva ran the
second fastest women’s time in 2008 when she crossed the finish line in
But, says Carol Vosloo, Two Oceans Marathon NPC General Manager, breaking
these records will be a hard-won battle.
"The records were set on a downhill finish, which means runners now
face the challenge of having to contend with an ascent to the finish line
"We don't think it's impossible to break these records, but Old
Mutual's Virtual Coach, Norrie Williamson estimates that only runners with
lightning fast marathon times - 2:07 for the men and 2:23 for the
women - will have a fighting chance."