20-year-old Tadu Nare from the Nedbank running club Ethiopia closed the curtain on a spectacular but gruelling Spar Grand Prix which saw 6 races in a span of 7 weeks as she was victorious in the Gqeberha leg which marked the end of the series.
Picking up another R25 000 for the win, Nare with 6 victories out of 6 events was unchallenged in the series and with her name on top of the standings, will pocket an extra R190 000. “I am happy to win all the races and I am really tired now,” said Nare who jets in and out of South Africa from Ethiopia for each event. “I only get a visa granted for 5 days so I have to go back home after each race, so my body is really tired not just from the racing but also the travelling.”
After a 31:28 victory in Cape Town early in the series which was also the 6th fastest 10km ever run on South African soil, Nare was hoping to run under 31 minutes in Gqeberha, but the windy city as its affectionally known came out in full force to dampen any hopes of a fast time.
“Yes it was my goal to run fast but unfortunately the wind was very strong so I just focussed on winning the race instead of trying to run fast.” Nare took the victory in 32:33, finishing 18 seconds ahead of 2nd placed Tayla Kavanagh, which was the closest of margins from all 6 races. Nare will now focus on her debut marathon which she will run next month in Barcelona.
“Now my focus will be fully in the marathon but definitely you will see me back next year for the Spar races because I love them,” said Nare. Asked what she will be doing with all the prize money she has accumulated from the series, Nare said she will help people in her community. “First, I will build a house for my mother, and I also want to buy some land and farming equipment because that is what we do here where I live. I will also help out some people in my community who do not have much.”
Nare joins Nedbank running club teammate Helalia Johannes to win all 6 events in the series. Johannes has one accolade higher in that she broke course records in every event. The Namibian international athlete was not part of the series this year due to injury but is hoping to be back next year.
Fellow Nedbank RC teammates Irvette Van Zyl, Stella Marais and Patience Murowe excelled in the windy city with top 10 finishes on the day. Van Zyl on the road back from injury ran a quick 33:27 which saw her finish 6th. Marais and Murowe were 8th and 9th respectively in 34:31 and 34:55 which saw the pair record top 10 finishes in all 6 events in the series.
Rolandi Schutte from Nedbank RC Cape Town finished 3rd in the veteran’s category recording a speedy 38:31. Annatjie Botes finished 2nd in the 60 plus category in 44:29.