Thugwane on a mission at Loskop race

Richard Nkosi

Richard Nkosi

One of South Africa's best ultra marathon runners Josiah Thugwane said he has a point to prove at the Loskop Ultra Marathon.

He wants to show his manager, Nick Bester, and the Two Oceans Marathon organisers that they were wrong to deny him an opportunity to participate in the race.

Thugwane said his manager failed to register him on time for the Two Oceans and his last-minute attempt to run in the place of a team mate who has withdrawn for the event was rejected by the organisers.

The 1996 Olympic gold medallist, will take part in the 50km Loskop ultra marathon on Saturday, which will start at 6am at Wanderers Street in Middelburg and finish at the Loskop Dam.

There will also be a 21,1km Wild Challenge starting at the same venue.

"I had trained very hard for the Two Oceans but I was disappointed when the manager [Bester] informed me at the last minute that I was not registered to participate.

"Now I will channel all my Two Oceans preparations into the Loskop," Thugwane, 38, said.

"My intention is to win the race and matching my record will come second."

Thugwane set the race recordof 2min:44sec:03sec in 2005. He did not enter last year.

The organisers have set aside R20000 for any runner who can break Thugwane's record and the women's record of 3:17:31 set by Paulina Phaho in 2004.

The first man and woman home in the 50km race will pocket R6000 while the winners of the 21,1km will get R3000.

Andrea Visser, race organiser, said entries for the marathon closed yesterday, but will reopen from Friday until Saturday morning.