2 OCEANS ULTRA MARATHON
The World’s Most Beautiful Marathon
The Old Mutual Two Oceans Marathon has earned a reputation as the world’s most beautiful marathon. The first race was held in 1970 and saw 26 runners line up to face the unknown challenge. Since then, the race has become a national institution and a firm favorite with local, upcountry, and international athletes.
The race was never intended to be anything more than a training run to enable Cape Town runners to prepare for the Comrades Marathon. The 26 runners who set out on the 35-miler from Impala Park were not aware that they were the pioneers of an event that in later years would attract more than 9 000 entrants. Entry fee was 50 cents and 15 people finished the race. Dirkie Steyn won the event in 3:55:50 and ran barefoot.
Through the years, the race underwent several changes, in qualifying times, finishing times, age restrictions and medals being awarded. In 1998, the race moved to a new venue. Runners started in Main Road Newlands and finished on the University of Cape Town's rugby fields, which is still unchanged till today. The official cut off time has now been extended to 7 hours, but Bronze medals are only awarded if you finish in less than 6 hours. A special Blue medal was introduced for sub 7 hour finishers.
The 2011 event saw a record field of close to 23 000 runners line up on Easter Saturday for the ultra and half marathon in perfect running weather. 14 147 runners took part in the half marathon, making it the biggest field in the event’s history and in South Africa, with the ultra attracting 8 645 entries. This truly Capetonian event attracted over 30 000 participants across all the different events.
This race offers fun runs on Good Friday, which includes a 56m nappy dash for kids, 300m toddlers’ trot, 2.5km and 5km fun runs. These fun runs are all about family and giving people a chance to experience the amazing event spirit.
Easter Saturday, 7 April 2012, will see the start of the 43rd consecutive Old Mutual Two Oceans Marathon which will remain on the traditional route via Chapman's Peak, Hout Bay and Constantia Nek (unless deemed unsafe by authorities in which case the Ou Kaapse Weg route will be used. At 06h25 a maximum of 11 000 runners will start this journey and I will be amongst them. This year will be my 3rd Ultra Marathon, and I’m hoping to better my previous time of 5h46. I have completed 7 Half Marathons as well.