The Comrades Marathon Association (CMA) Board announced on Wednesday, February 10 that the 2021 edition of the prestigious race, which was scheduled for June, has been cancelled for the second year in a row.
The decision to call off the event for a second successive year comes as an enormous disappointment to thousands of runners, as the Comrades Marathon would have celebrated its 100th anniversary this year.
The CMA Board has regrettably announced its decision to cancel the Comrades Marathon Centenary Race scheduled for 13…
“The CMA Board is determined that the health, safety and welfare of Comrades runners, officials, volunteers and the general public remains paramount even after having held out hope that the nation’s most unifying road running event would have been able to be hosted in June,” said CMA in a statement.
The board said the “impending third wave of COVID-19” is anticipated to hit South Africa around April and June 2021 and these fears have dashed the hopes of hosting a mass event in the near future.
However, it is not all doom and gloom. CMA intends to celebrate the marathon’s centenary in May. The first race was held on May 24, 1924 and the celebrations are scheduled for May 24, 2021.
The board will also host its second Comrades Marathon virtual event on Sunday, June 13. The event will allow runners to run in any location – outside in their gardens, or neighbourhoods – at their own pace.
In 2020, 43 788 participants from 100 countries took part in the ‘Race the Comrades Legends’ virtual event.
“Amidst intense and ongoing uncertainty with the Covid-19 pandemic and its effects on mass gatherings and events, our runners’ interests remain uppermost in our minds and endeavours,” said CMA Chairperson, Cheryl Winn.
Winn urged runners to take care and maintain their fitness level in order to ensure a smooth transition back to competing once the normal staging of distance running resumes.
The details of the virtual event and Comrades Centenary Celebrations will be revealed in due time.