Dlomo supports Ramaala on races

DETERMINED: Norman Dlomo. Pic. Antonio Muchave. 13/12/04. © Sowetan.
DETERMINED: Norman Dlomo. Pic. Antonio Muchave. 13/12/04. © Sowetan.

Ramatsiyi Moholoa

Norman Dlomo, pictured, top South African runner, has come out in support of Hendrick Ramaala for blasting the corporate world for pumping a lot of money into ultra distances.

"I was touched by Hendrick's statement in Sowetan last Monday that athletes doing 10kms, 15kms, half-marathons and standard marathons are treated like dirt.

"Our companies are only prepared to sponsor you when you do ultra distances, irrespective of your successes in the marathons and other shorter distances. I was a victim of that problem in 2000 when I lost out on a lucrative contract from a top club because they wanted me to run ultra marathons.

"They made it clear that if I don't run the long distances, I had to run as many road races within a short space of time so that they could get maximum mileage in the media.

"The problem is that clubs are also to blame here, they force the athletes to race in too many events, sometimes four races a month."

Dlomo, running for Lekoa Athletics Club, said athletes running Comrades and Two Oceans marathons were looked after.