(Durban: September 17, 2014) It’s all systems go for the brand new Comrades KZNA Relay Challenge, an exciting sprinting competition for high schools across KwaZulu-Natal.
The Relay Challenge, started in 2013 by KZN Athletics and the Fast Feet Athletics Club, is now bigger, better and includes sponsorship from the Comrades Marathon Association and sportswear brand Adidas. The competition kicks off with the semi-finals on September 26 and the finals on October 2 at the Kings Park Athletics Stadium.
The winning schools and age group teams will compete for R50,000 in prize money, R70,000 in equipment from Adidas and a bronzed spike trophy. Among the high schools that have already signed up are Glenwood, New Forest, Danville Park Girls, Kingsway, Maris Stella, St Mary’s DSG, Sukuma Comprehensive and Pietermaritzburg Girls.
The Comrades KZNA Relay Challenge is a team event that encompasses a 1x800m, 1x400m, 2x200m and 4x100m with eight athletes per team in three age categories – Sub-Youth, Youth and Junior. Four districts have been invited from across the province with a total of 20 teams per age group in male and female categories – that is 40 teams per age group and 120 teams in total.
“We know that it is vital to continue to identify talent if we are to produce world class athletes in KwaZulu-Natal on a consistent basis. The Relay Challenge was born to provide track athletes with an opportunity to showcase their skills. In addition it also aims to reignite interest in athletics and identify talent at a district level,” said KZNA president Sello Mokoena.
“We’re quite positive that we’ll unearth some raw talent that we can nurture to reach their true potential. We believe that in partnering the Comrades Marathon Association and Adidas we can grow this event from strength to strength.”
Comrades Marathon Association Chairman Macdonald Chitja said the Relay Challenge was a real opportunity to get youngsters involved in athletics. “We see it as a platform to develop athletic skill and create an enabling competitive environment where these youngsters can race against their peers. It’s an opportunity to instil a lifelong passion for the sport and, who knows, we may even see some of these athletes at the Olympics Games one day.”