Muzhingi, Fokoroni team up for Comrades Marathon

HARARE – Zimbabwe distinguished ultra-marathon runners will be looking forward to team work when they get into the Comrades Marathon race from Pietermaritzburg to Durban, South Africa early this morning and bring home the coveted R440 000.

The winner of this year’s edition of the race which has been running since 1921 serve for years during the Second World War is set to pocket a cool R440 000 for both male and female categories.

In addition to that the organisers have dangled a carrot to the same value for any athlete who is going to break a Comrades Marathon record which makes it a race to enter without any shade of doubt.

Muzhingi, the country’s most successful Comrades Marathon athlete with three wins in successive years between 2009 and 2011 boasts of nine gold medals in this race and wants to make it 10 golds with a win in today’s race.

“I’m the first Zimbabwean to win gold and also the first one to win gold since 1923 and I have nine gold medals in total; I want to clock 10 golds before I move on to invest in a sports academy,” Muzhingi told the Daily News on Sunday from South Africa on the eve of the race.

“I think I’m in my best shape I have trained as hard as I could. I took a bit of a break in taking part in races in between with my sights set on the money and I believe it can be done. I have done it before. I’m happy I will be joined by some of my compatriots and that makes the journey to success even much easier, if I can’t have it then it will have to be my fellow countrymen.”

Fokoroni who finished inside top three in the 54km JM Busha Peace and Unity Marathon race a fortnight back in Harare is upbeat the races he has done locally have prepared him well for the 89km ultra-marathon that gets underway at 5:30am today.

“I will be happy to be with my fellow Zimbabweans since ... we will be sharing water, drinks and giving advice to each other. We have been training together at home so being in the same line-up with them does not come with any added pressure,” Fokoroni told the Daily News on Sunday.