Type: Road race
The 36th Winelands Marathon was graced with near perfect running conditions the day after the Western Cape was battered by a massive thunderstorm the night before. As a result my lift was left stranded in Hout Bay which saw me make my way to Stellenbosch on my own. Thoughts of “Nutter” crossed my mind thinking I may be the only die hard to brave this race. Closer to Stellenbosch I could see fellow runners driving towards the start venue. So I wasn’t the only crazy runner…. The parking was well organised and you could even park fairly close to the start by paying a few Rands to park on the nearby school field. Due to the weather conditions I chose not to take a camera so there are no running shots.
The start line was alive with the typical chatter and banter before the run. I was joined by a fellow club runner for the first 10 kilometers. Unsure of pushing or taking it easy he bolted. As you turn off the Polkadraai Road you are greeted with farmlands. We passed strawberry fields, vineyards and even a farm with Wildebeest. The water tables were well placed and had ample water and coke. The course is undulating and is not the easiest around but the scenery makes up for this. Around the 33km mark you turn onto an uneven gravel road for approximately 3kms. The rain started at this point but it was light and actually helped me. Thereafter the route back is flat and downhill at times. The finish is well organised and you are greeted with the announcer welcoming all the athletes in with the customary medal to mark your achievement and my PB. Benefits belonging to a club is the gazebo at the finish. A great time to hear fellow club runner’s stories. A nice hot cup of soup was the perfect finish to the day. Great race, well organised and will do this again!