14 JUNE 2020


Latest News

At its recent Annual General Meeting held on Thursday 21 November 2019, the Comrades Marathon Association (CMA) Board paid tribute to its outgoing Vice Chairperson Sifiso Nzuza, for having served the CMA with distinction in various capacities for a period of 19 years, acknowledging the honesty, integrity, independence, courage, conviction, dignity and decorum with which he had represented the Association, and thanked him for outstanding and longstanding service.


Elections were also conducted at the Annual General Meeting in compliance with the CMA Constitution, which provides for staggered elections in alternating years in terms of which four Board members are elected to a two-year term of office in odd years and five members in even years.


The election process was overseen by the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC).  


With the CMA being founded as an Association, the main function of the Board is corporate governance, the formulation of the strategic policies of the organisation and ensuring the sustainability of The Ultimate Human Race. Importantly, the Board is further tasked with retaining the world-class standards, ethos and traditions that are synonymous with this iconic event. 


The following members were elected to the Board for the forthcoming two-year term of office:

  • Patricia Freeman
  • Isaac Ngwenya
  • Zinhle Sokhela
  • Cheryl Winn


The remaining Board members whose term of office will expire in November 2020 are:

  • Linda Hlongwa Madlala
  • Celi Makhoba
  • Steve Mkasi
  • Mqondisi Ngcobo


Cheryl Winn was re-elected as Chairperson while Mqondisi Ngcobo is the newly elected Vice Chairperson.  


At its first monthly meeting following the AGM which was held on Wednesday 27 November, the CMA Board opted in accordance with CMA’s Constitution to co-opt Les Burnard, as well as to re-appoint outgoing Board member, Adrian Stowell, to fill a vacancy, which occurred with the resignation from the Board of outgoing Vice Chairperson, Sifiso Nzuza.


The complete CMA Board is therefore as follows:


  • Cheryl Winn, Chairperson
  • Mqondisi Ngcobo, Vice Chairperson
  • Les Burnard
  • Patricia Freeman
  • Linda Hlongwa-Madlala
  • Celi Makhoba
  • Steve Mkasi
  • Isaac Ngwenya
  • Zinhle Sokhela
  • Adrian Stowell


In accordance with its Constitution one further Board member may be co-opted at the discretion of the Board at their next sitting.


The Comrades Marathon has been awarded Gold Label status by the International Association of Ultrarunners (IAU). The accolade is a feather in the cap for The Ultimate Human Race which holds a number of high-profile awards which have all contributed to the event's local and global prestige.

The IAU introduced its own labelling system for qualifying events to ensure that the race route is measured to conform to World Athletics (WA - formerly known as the IAAF) regulations as well as enjoying recognition by its own national athletics federation, being Athletics South Africa.

This effectively means that only athletic performances in IAU labelled races are officially recognised. This is not only important for possible "Best Performances" but also for the calculations of any travel grants distributed at major IAU competitions.

The IAU Labels are certifications granted by the international body to ultradistance races and are categorised according to IAU Gold Label, IAU Silver Label and IAU Bronze Label.

The labels are conferred on IAU ultramarathon races in various categories. In order to qualify for the Gold Label status, the Comrades Marathon had to meet the following criteria:


Race history and performance:
• Gold – the race must have existed for 3 years (3 editions) at least and if not, it must have had an IAU silver label for the previous year.

Elite performances:
• Gold and Silver – at least 5 athletes (mixed men and women) performances at international (gold) or national level (silver) in one of the three previous years.


Course Measurement:
• Gold – the route must be measured by an Official “A” or “B” WA/AIMS measurer following the WA rules (with the Jones Counter).
• Gold and Silver – a technical delegate must be appointed prior to the race, decided between LOC, IAU General Secretary and Area Representative.


Anti-doping Control:
 Gold – Anti-doping control has to respect the WA guidelines and the numbers of controls will be discussed with the IAU. Costs are met by the race organisation or the national federation.


CMA Chairperson, Cheryl Winn said, “We are grateful to the IAU for conferring the impressive Gold Label status on the Comrades Marathon. This is indeed an honour and a privilege for the CMA; as well as being a massive show of confidence in the thousands of Comrades members, volunteers and stakeholders who execute a remarkable event year in and year out.”


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