The Mandela Day Trail Run, part of the greater Mandela Day Marathon event, has become a highlight on the trail running calendar and this year promises to be yet another spectacular affair.
The trail run is organised by KZN Trail Running (KZNTR) on behalf of the Mandela Day Marathon Committee and is taking place on Saturday, 26 August at the Mandela Capture Site in Howick. The event offers route options for all to enjoy, with 4km, 8km and 15km distances taking participants through the scenic rolling hills surrounding the historically significant site of Nelson Mandela’s capture.
The MEC for Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs in KwaZulu-Natal Ms Nomusa Dube-Ncube, speaking on behalf of the Provincial Government, believes that this event which is set to attract over a thousand participants, is an important piece of the activities that happen on the Mandela Day Marathon weekend. “As a province we are fully behind this event which pushes participants to the limit, one of the lessons we learn from the life of Madiba is endurance, we also learn that the road to success is not plain sailing, it is filled with uphills, downhills, tar roads, gravel roads and all manner of obstacles. The activities that have been put together for Mandela Day Marathon Weekend indeed reflect this and we look forward to thousands of participants coming to the Mgungundlovu District” said Dube-Ncube
Commenting on the Trail Run, Lauren Booth of KZNTR, said that the route comprised of some tough hills but were symbolic for a nation overcoming adversity.
Trail running has enjoyed steady growth in an around KZN and has become a sport accessible for people of all ages and walks of life. A significant aspect of many of these events is the inclusion of the youth in these races and The Mandela Day Trail Run is no different.
“The Mandela Day Trail Run is open to juniors,” Lauren said. “We recommend that children run their age so 4km for four years and above, 8km for eight years and above and 15km for 15 years and above.”
Adding to the event’s prestigious reputation is the lucrative prize money totalling R54 000, which is sure to attract many top runners from across the country. However, as Lauren explained, this run is open for all and is about paying tribute to Madiba. “Inspire change. In yourself and those around you. In Madiba’s memory,” she said.
The Mayor of the uMgungundlovu District Cllr Thobekile Maphumulo has urged those wanting to participate in the Trail Run to ensure that they register as entries close on 24 August. “As a district we believe that these activities that take place during the Weekend of the Marathon Day Marathon are going to yield positive economic outcomes for our communities as thousands of participants come to our district”.
The Saturday events also include a MTB and Triathalon event, as well as Sunday 27 August’s road events.