Kekana aims to win race

Ramatsiyi Moholoa

Ramatsiyi Moholoa

Top South African runner Johannes Kekana is hoping to make it third time lucky at the Nedbank Soweto Marathon on November 5.

This is after two unsuccessful consecutive attempts in the "People's Race", where he finished a credible seventh in 2004 and fifth last year.

"There is tremendous improvement yearly; the plan for this year is to win the marathon," Kekana said yesterday.

"It will be a hell of a tough marathon this year, considering that there is a lot of money involved now in all our road running events.

"I think the biggest threat will be the runners from Zimbabwe and Lesotho, who have been dominating the Soweto Marathon.

"Locally, you cannot ignore top runners such as George Mofokeng, Brian Zondi, Fusi Nhlapo and Simon Mpholo," he said.

The 2005 South African Marathon champion said he was doing speed work as part of his final preparations for the marathon.

Kekana recently returned from Limpopo where he had gone to fine-tune for the race.

This year's marathon will for the first time in 14 years start and finish in Soweto. In the past it included areas such as Bosmont and Mondeor.

"The Soweto Marathon is going back home, everybody is working hard to ensure that we have a successful marathon," said Leonard Chuene, Athletics South Africa president.

"The support we've had from the people of Soweto has been awesome, we're counting on them to help us make it the best ever."

ASA is expecting more than 10 000 people to take part in the marathon.