Mabhunu, Nyahora win Vumba Half Marathon

VUMBA - In-form Elijah Mabhunu won his sixth half marathon this year when he came home first in the prestigious 2014 edition of the Old Mutual Vumba Mountain Run yesterday.

Mabhunu ran an impressive 1:05:15 beating a strong challenge from Lionel Muchena, who came in second in a time of 1:06:38.

Last year’s male category winner Collin Kanyimo, who is coming just making a return from injury, came fifth behind Wirimai Zhuwao and Lewis Masunda.

Rutendo Nyahora, who came in as the defending champion in the tough race, managed to defend her title from rival Faith Nyasango with a time of 1:17:17 in the ladies section.

Nyasango crossed the finish line with a time of 1:23:17.

Both Mabhunu and Nyahora were last week’s Gutu Half Marathon winners.

Alicen Manake and Sharon Tawenga and Constance Nyasango completed the top five female Vumba Half Marathon runners.

Old timer Samukheliso Moyo won the veterans’ section in the 10 kilometre race.

Jacob Mugomeri won the 10 kilometre male race with Moses Tariga a close second while Olivia Chitate won among the female contingent with Patience Murove coming in second.

More than 200 athletes took part in the race which had its fair share of drama after Jeremiah Mufandaedza stormed home a close second in the male half marathon only to be disqualified for having nipped a distance of his course.

Last year’s victor Canisious ‘Navara’ Nyamutsita, who was disqualified after coming first in a time that was even faster than the world record, came eighth in the race.

Brain Rotch, one of the organisers, however, felt that the course was clearly marked for the runners.

“The course looked fine to me no one else got lost. I don’t know what happened,” Rotch said.

Manicaland Athletics Board (MAB) Chairperson Joshua Matume said they had deployed 20 qualified officials along the race course and many volunteers to avoid a repeat of last year drama and he was not sure how Mufandaedza got lost.

“It happens in such races,” was the best answer Matume offered.

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