Threedom run?

This Saturday, 3 was definitely a crowd: the 3rd week of the month, the 3rd month of the year, event number 393 had 1313 runners and 30 teams - so we had to have 33 volunteers!

Here is the Delta Run Report for Saturday:

Delta parkrun
Event number 393
16th March 2019

This week 1313 people ran, jogged and walked the course, of whom 122 were first timers and 192 recorded new Personal Bests. Representatives of 30 different clubs took part.

The event was made possible by 33 volunteers:

Patrick PITTARD • Nicoline DE KOCK • Billy DE KOCK • Andre LABUSCHAGNE • Patrick SAAL • Philip RUDD • Beth LIBBY-NEALE • Jamiel NASSIEP • Terrie LEWIS • Jake LEWIS • James HIGGINSON • Belinda GERMESHUIZEN • John NEALE • Ray FUNNELL • Kate LABUSCHAGNE • Sanra BROEKMAN • Carl BROEKMAN • Jonathan MOSTERT • Dot PRIEST • Roshini PILLAY • Terrance Mark BOOYSEN • Justine WATTERSON • Denise DE OLIVEIRA • Joan MC NAUGHTON • Eric BEATTIE • Kim DARE • Margaret Ann PITTARD • Kathleen KRUGER • William KRUGER • Alwyn LATEGAN • Gareth PASSMORE • Christopher FERGUSON

Today's full results and a complete event history can be found on the Delta parkrun Results Page.

The male record is held by Unknown ATHLETE who recorded a time of 15:29 on 14th September 2013 (event number 96).
The female record is held by Carina VILJOEN who recorded a time of 18:48 on 21st July 2018 (event number 357).
The Age Grade course record is held by Stuart MC COLL who recorded 88.25% (17:52) on 3rd November 2018 (event number 372).

Delta parkrun started on 12th November 2011. Since then 34,810 participants have completed 283,280 parkruns covering a total distance of 1,416,400 km, including 45,191 new Personal Bests. A total of 756 individuals have volunteered 7,693 times.

 

Wet, wet, wet

After a week-long downpour and events getting cancelled left, right and centre, the weather was always going to be the talk of the town this week. Waking up and looking out my window to grey skies and muddy puddles in my driveway I knew that the Delta (home of South African parkrun) faithful would not disappoint and I wasn’t wrong.

 

Historic Delta

Historic Delta

 

Upon arrival just before 7am I was greeted by the Run Director as well as a host of newly developed dams. A quick course check revealed a flooded bridge at the 1 km mark and, surprisingly, only patches of mud here and there. The hills were finally working to our advantage: the drainage of the park was spectacular!

7:30am and the cars began to stream in. As a car parking marshal I was quickly reassured that we won’t get the regular attendance of over 1,000 enthusiastic parkrunners, but it was clear that a little bit of mud and imminent possibly of rain wasn’t going to scare the regulars and tourists away.

Soon a small group started to form under the trees, most looking to the skies, others taking a walk to take pictures of the rivers and dams that had formed where the overflow car park used to be. Locals talking about 90ml to 100ml of rain in a couple of hours overnight, others’ gauges had just reached capacity "and some".

At about 7:45am, with 100-odd runners at the starting point, the Run Director made the call to run the course in reverse to avoid congestion over the narrow bridges at the 1 km mark. As the rain began to fall and we started getting word of even more cancellations rolling in across the country, we were reassured that Delta doesn’t just cancel for a bit of rain!

We were called to the start at 7:55 and it's like the parkrun gods knew and the rain stopped just in time with a 3, 2, 1 and we were off!!

Starting up the hill is never easy. Patches of mud here and there – the course had taken the rain well. The athletes that did steeplechase in school clearly had the advantage as two hopped passed me crossing where the road used to be.

 

Delta's new "dam" near the car park before Polly Shortts

Delta's new "dam" near the car park before Polly Shortts

 

The scenery coming down the hill overlooking the park was a great change and I definitely think the course should be run in reverse more often. All went well till the 4 km bridge, at stages knee deep, followed by slippery mud going up the hill with wet heavy shoes wasn't easy and I am sure most came to the same conclusion as me that it was better just to walk up it.

Getting cheered in by the volunteers, most of whom had been standing in the rain all morning, excited parkrunners claiming their first ever top 50 or top 100 because today surely wasn’t a day for PBs!

It was an honour to join the Delta team and I would like to thank the volunteers and organisers as well as the sponsors for another successful, satisfying Saturday morning out with the parkrun family

Christopher Ferguson
16 February 2019

 

Delta parkrun records broken in 2018!

Delta’s female record is broken every two years and 2018 was no exception.

Originally set at Event 8 on the last day of 2011 by Ann Ashworth who ran a 21:18, the Delta record was broken in May 2012 at Event 29 by Zola Budd Pieterse who smashed it with a 19:57, to break 20 minutes for the first time.

Budd Pieterse’s record held for two years and in October 2014 Rene Kalmer ran the 5 km in 19:33 at Event 153 to break it. It took another two years for Tamara Jewett to take the time below 19 minutes to 18:50 at Event 252 in August 2016. And again, on cue, the record has been broken in 2018, this time by Carina Viljoen who shaved 2 seconds off the previous record.

If some of these names are familiar to you, they should be! They represent some of the cream of South African running talent.

Ann Ashworth is the 2018 Comrades Marathon winner but she also started both the Roodepoort and Bryanston parkruns. Zola Budd Pieterse, who hails from Bloemfontein and was famous for running middle and long distances barefoot, competed in the 1984 Olympic Games (representing Britain, but that’s another story). Rene Kalmer is also an Olympic athlete, having represented SA at both the 2008 and the 2012 Summer Olympics.

Tamara Jewett, a Canadian visiting SA, popped into two parkruns and taught locals a few lessons (she still holds Voortrekker’s record). A name to watch though is Carina Viljoen. This 21-year-old South African athlete is currently studying in Arkansas and has a 5 km PB of 16:28.3. She comes from great running genes – her father Gerhard Viljoen has a 7-hour Comrades to his name.

Some brilliant Delta female athletes who have clocked up times that could have broken records if they had been run a little earlier include Kate Roberts (19:04), Holly Crews (19:53), Simone Burger (19:56), Maria Vilakazi (19:59), Megan Diffenthal (20:07), Kimberley Swanepoel (20:11), Leigh McMorran (20:24) and Demi Rogers (20:49).

The Delta age graded record was also broken in 2018 when Stuart McColl (VM55-59) ran a blistering 17:52 to achieve an age grading of 88.25% at Event 372 (03/11/18) on his first-ever run at Delta. With 17 Comrades to his name, Stuart has been tearing up parkrun courses around the country. He has done 17:23 at Voortrekker (89.17%), 16:45 at Klerksdorp (91%), 16:28 at Parys (92.51%) and an astonishing 16:03 at North Beach (94%). Stuart loves doing parkruns as a time trial because it helps to get his speed up. He found Delta parkrun to be among the best and most challenging parkruns and enjoyed the hospitality.

Stuart McColl
Stuart McColl breaking the age graded record with Delta's famous palm tree behind him. Photo: Bruce Sparks

Sadly, we don’t have the same good news regarding the male record. Delta’s male record holder is an Unknown Athlete who completed Event 96 in 2013 in 15:29. We keep hoping that someone with a barcode will better this time and we have an excellent line-up of men who are likely to do so. Perhaps the hottest contenders are Admire Muzopambwa (16:09) who has placed first at Delta 49 times, Quintin Honey (16:13) and Rapula Kekae (16:32) have come close this year.

Other top runners have been Dan Don Ndlovu (15:56); Bernard Dandadzi (16:03); Michael Pienaar (16:10) and Innocent Ndlovu (16:16), but none have done these times recently.

So, gents, the challenge is on. We want a named athlete to take the crown!

 

Extra holiday events planned

Great news! Delta parkrun will once again host an event on Christmas Day (at 08h00) and on New Year's Dat (at 09h30). These will be official parkruns and they will count towards your milestones.

Some of the other Joburg parkruns will also hold events on New Year's Day, so you will be able to do two runs that day and both will count towards your official parkrun total. Check them out here: http://www.parkrun.co.za/christmas-compendium/

We would love to host you at Delta parkrun if you are in Joburg over the festive season!

 

Amazing birthday bash planned

We have wonderful plans for Delta's 6th birthday - which is also parkrun SA's 6th birthday.

Founder Paul SInton-Hewitt will attend the birthday celebrations and we invite everyone to a bring-your-own picnic afterwards to be able to socialise with Paul.

Please bring your SA flags to wave in celebration of the SA birthday and if you have a purple volunteer shirt, please wear it.

We are collecting running shoes and running gear for those less fortunate, so please bring whatever you no longer need.

We are expecting a huge turnout, so please use the parking at Delta Park School - it leads straight into the park and will be safe and convenient. Only R5/car which goes to school funds.

Our sponsors will also be there, contributing to the fun!

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