March Newsletter

March Newsletter

 I’m finding it hard to believe that I am already writing my second newsletter of the year.  The days seem to be passing by with incredible speed.  The fact that I have to keep my headlamp on for most of my early morning run, to avoid the potholes and cow pats in the road, is proof that Autumn is fast approaching.

Our new committee has been working tirelessly behind the scenes, and we are happy to report that our running club seems to be increasingly busy this month.

Our weekly Tuesday time trials are growing slowly which is most encouraging to see.

The first ever Public Holiday fun run held on Human Right’s Day was very well attended.  Aside from our beloved chairman’s accident, the day went off without a hitch and many of the runners stayed behind to enjoy a social coffee at Noom.  Trevor Davies, from Crossfit, enthusiastically offered us the gym’s facilities for any future events – an offer we will most certainly take him up on.


Chairman’s Report

 Hi Everyone

It is Two Oceans season and we have quite a few athletes running this weekend.  We wish them all the best.  We would also like to thank everyone who sponsored our three development runners, especially the Bannatynes and our Cape Town member Ryan Bruton who assisted with transport and accommodation.  The club donated R3000 to them plus an additional R1000 was sponsored.

– Cycling:

We are aware that the previous newsletter didn’t reach all our members. We spoke about support for cycling in it and a transcript is available at:

Fundamentally we accommodate the cyclists but we don’t have the capacity to support them at present as we have no cyclists involved in the club.
This is a problem as there is an assumption that the club will assist with the hosting of cycling events for little/no compensation.

At present we are busy with negotiations for the G2C and I call on all members to support us as we are busy with long term planning that will benefit our club members and the cycling community in the not too distant future. More about this in our next news letter.

Historically A.S.S was hugely involved with the organisation of this event however as the cycling landscape changed and cyclists didnt require club membership/licensing the clubs role waned and at present we there is no benefit for us to continue our support.

However – As we are a multisport club we would be naive not to consider supporting our cycling community and we have a a plan to involve the cyclists but we need our running members to meet us 1/2 way.
Once the negotiations are complete we will send further communication to you all.

-Time Trials:
A huge thank you to everyone who has joined us for our Tuesday evening time trials.
It is slowly but surely becoming more popular and I would like to see more of our club members join in on the fun.
We have members from all ages and speeds running with us and I believe the networking is valuable as new friendships allow for more frequent runs.
Please try and join us on the next one!

– Future Events:
* At present we are looking at hosting a possible 3 local events this year.
This largely depends on the joint efforts with other clubs and/or parties and we will update you once we have more information.

* Also – there seems to be interest from a few members to start training for the 2019 Comrades. Should this be something you are interested in contact me(Jaco) and we can get the ball rolling.

– The Mountain Drive 1/2 Marathon:
This historic race has a new sponsor for then next 3 years – GBS Mutual Bank in Grahamstown.
The Rotary Club is managing the organisation and the previous A.S.S committee will be assisting with various tasks.
We might reach out to our members for some assistance but at present we have everything under control.

– AGM:
I would like to propose the date for our next AGM to be 14 June 2018. We will confirm the details in good time.
Please note, these meetings can be long(between 2 to 3 hours) however there is a bar and it is not to formal.
These meetings are rather crucial as we as a committee needs to ensure that we understand your challenges plus requirements and this is your platform for these discussion.
We also need to update our members with important information on the club’s future, the state of our finances and various other issues.
Please pencil this date in and commit, I cannot stress the importance of this enough.

– Club Kit:
We have had a few requests to update our closet and we have already met with all the local suppliers and are awaiting feedback from a few out of town options.
A couple of our members have indicated that they are willing to assist in this matter and we’ll have all the options ready for you at the above mentioned AGM.



Membership Fees

 At the AGM we also made decisions about this year’s membership fees for cyclists, trail runners and social members of the club.  You’ll be glad to hear that, unlike VAT, our fees aren’t going up a cent!  This is a perfect time for all our cyclists and trail runners to get up to date with their subs.  To find out how, please visit


Race Report Backs

 We’d love to hear what you’ve been up to, please email us and let us share your experience with our members



The Makana Brick Race over eight kilometres of Grahamstown’s streets as the sun sets is undoubtedly one of the biggest and most popular social-cum-sporting in the city each year. Essentially it’s a fun run that brings together people from all parts of the community.

Hundreds of runners, joggers and walkers take to the well-marshalled streets with two refreshment stations for their fun-filled jaunt under starry skies.  This year’s race on Wednesday 14 March attracted a huge entry of about 500 townsfolk, Rhodes University students and hundreds of pupils from local private and public schools.

The atmosphere was on the jovial side as local battle re-enactment specialist Basil Mills set the field on its way at Somerset field on the Graeme College campus with some booming help from his hand-held ‘mini-cannon’, as one participant described it.

Among those in the field were a good number of Rhodes students sporting their athletics club colours.

A feature of the race, and indicative of the support given by sponsors Makana Brick, is that every finisher receives not only a medal, but also a freshly-harvested pineapple from a farm in the Lower Albany district.

There were also spot prizes for lucky finishers and prize-money for the faster finishers.

A sight to behold on race evening was the looks on the faces of schoolchildren as they proudly held up their medals and pineapples upon finishing the journey on foot along city streets.

Another all-important feature of the event is that proceeds go to Grahamstown Hospice, an organisation that performs invaluable work within the Grahamstown community.

For the record, the men’s and ladies’ winners this year were Masixole Xhayiya and DSG pupil Kendal Rose respectively. Runners-up were Lubabalo Bokuva (men) and DSG pupil Emily McLean (ladies). Third-placed finishers were Sisa Camagu (men) and Terri-Lynn Penney (ladies).


Club News

 We want to hear from you!!! Please let us celebrate your news with the club.


Upcoming Races and Events



–  Autumn Trail Series

There’s a great series of trail running races happening soon in the PE area.  The final race is on Sunday 8 April at Crossways Farm Village.  Each race has a 5, 10 and 15km route.  For more info check out


  • Old Mutual AC Half Marathon

14 April

Hamilton Sport Club, Selborne

21,1km; 10km; 5km

Contact: Boitumelo Lepman 082 565 9737

Tendani Mufamadi 083 236 2825


  • African Wildlife Artistry 40th Bruintjieshoogte Ultramarathon

21 April

Gill Primary School, Somerset East.

Ultramarathon; 25km; 15km; Fun Run

Contact: Henrico Marais 083 446 5598

Ronette Marais 083 505 7700


  • East London Pacers 10km

21 April

Beacon Bay Country Club

Contact: Sharonne Dewing 083 318 3853


  • Merrell Hobbit Trail Runs

28 April

Arminel Hotel – Hogsback

16-20km; 22-41km; 42,2km and up

Entries: /


  • Siza Vitality Half Marathon

28 April

Port Alfred High School

21,1km; 5km

Contact: Michael Mbambani 079 149 6796

Noluthando Vithi 083 553 6323

Mthuthuzeli Pikoli 071 308 8870



Weekly Events


  • Grahamstown Parkrun

Every Saturday morning at 8:00, starting at the Makana Botanical Gardens, Lucas Avenue.

Contact: Nicola Brown

072 180 1594

  • Albany Saints and Sinners Time trial

5:30pm every Tuesday from Albany Sports Club

  • Rhodes Athletics Club Time Trial

5:15pm every Wednesday from Rhodes Sport Building next to the field at the end of African Street

  • Trail Running

5:20pm every Thursday from Gray’s Dam

  • Weekend Long Runs

We will confirm the details.


Have a happy, healthy and energetic Easter.

’til next time