Bosman and Broodryk shine in the Peninsula Marathon while Oldknow books her ticket to Paris in Spain

The mid-pack snake of runners make their way into Simon's Town towards the end of the Balwin Peninsula Marathon. Photo - Stephen Granger

Southern Cape athlete, Lloyd Bosman, gave himself an early birthday gift with a decisive win at the Balwin Peninsula Marathon in windy weather in Cape Town this morning (Sunday 18 February), with leading ultra-marathon athlete, Adele Broodryk, holding off her fast-finishing Nedbank teammate, Deanne Laubscher, to win the women’s race.

Lloyd Bosman’s colour-coded Vapour Fly shoes speed him towards the finish and victory at the Simon’s Town Naval Sportsfield. Photo – Stephen Granger

It proved a big day for Pacaltsdorp in distance-running parlance, with two of the favourite sons of the Southern Cape city, George’s, suburb, engaged in serious marathon business on different sides of the equator this morning.

Both ran races of which Pacaltsdorp can be proud – Bosman, just a week shy of his 36th birthday, won his Peninsula Marathon debut in a personal best time of 2 hr 22 min 25 sec, while top track, road and cross-country athlete, Elroy Gelant, ran a superb 2:08:56 PB in Seville, Spain, behind winner Deresa Geleta Ulfata of Ethiopia (2:03:26), while trying for an Olympic qualifier.

Cian Oldknow races to an Olympic marathon qualifying time and the second fastest ever by a South African athlete in the Seville Marathon. Photo – courtesy Cian Oldknow

But the big marathon news of the day was 27-year-old Cian Oldknow’s superb 2:25:08 Olympic qualifier in Seville this morning, just two weeks after her marathon debut in the Johnson Crane Marathon in Benoni. Oldknow finished less than three minutes behind race winner, Ethiopian Azmera Gebru Hagos (2:22:13) with Kenyan Josephine Chepkoech 25 seconds down in second place.

The Hollywood Athletics Club athlete’s time is the second fastest ever by a South African, just 65 seconds slower than Gerda Steyn’s national record, set in Valencia last December, and looks certain to clinch her a place on the OIympic team to Paris in July / August.

Man and machine – A lead cyclist accompanies Sibabalwe Mzazi, running in second place through Glencairn. Photo – Stephen Granger

Bosman, who won the 27 for Freedom Race at Groot Drakenstein exactly a year ago, was too strong for Gauteng athlete, Sibabalwe Gladwin Mzazi in the final quarter, opening a gap on his rival through Fish Hoek and going solo for the final 10km to clinch victory by 56 seconds.

Earlier, a lead pack of five, spearheaded by Bosman, Mzazi, former Peninsula Marathon winner, Lindikhaya Mthangayi, and winner of last week’s Milkwood Half Marathon, Sibisiso Madikizela, had passed halfway in Bergvliet on 2 hr 20 min pace, but the stiff head-wind which battered the athletes in the final stages slowed the pace and thwarted a number of athletes’ marathon ambitions.

Adele Broodryk wins the Balwin Peninsula Marathon. Photo – Stephen Granger

Broodryk had hoped for a sub 2:45 personal best, having recorded a marathon split of 2:45:03 during last year’s Nedbank 50km, which would surely have been hers had the race been run yesterday in windless conditions. But her 2:46:46 was nonetheless a minute quicker than her previous best time in a completed marathon, set in Cape Town in 2021. 

“It was a good warm-up for Two Oceans,” Broodryk said. “A pity about the wind, although I was able to find a great male runner going my pace who was prepared to share the load of being a wind shield. That really helped until he was forced to stop with stomach problems.

Adele Broodryk with her ‘wind-shield partner’ Surprise Khoza. Photo – Stephen Granger

“At one stage I heard that I had a 13 minute lead over the second woman, Deanne, and was surprised to see she closed the gap down to just over a minute at the finish. She was really strong in the second half.”

But spare a thought for Laubscher, who whittled down Broodryk’s substantial lead at 30km to just over a minute at the finish, clocking 2:47:51 to miss her PB by just two seconds.

Tymebank Langa teammates and top two in the Balwin Peninsula Half Marathon, William Kaptein (right) and Raydon Balie. Photo – Stephen Granger

It was all Tymebank Langa in the Peninsula Half Marathon, which started at the marathon halfway mark, with clubmates William Kaptein and Fortunate Chidzivo taking the respective titles.  Kaptein clocked 1:06:59 to beat another Langa athlete, Raydon Balie, by 53 seconds, while Chidzivo finished two minutes clear of World 50km champion, Carla Molinaro, in the women’s competition.

But back to Seville, and a stellar day for South African marathon running. Oldknow ran a  perfectly judged marathon.  After racing through halfway in 1:12:36, she was four seconds faster in the second half to record an exceptional time in just her second marathon.

Making waves in Seville – South Africa’s marathon stars Elroy Gelant and Cian Oldknow. Photo – courtesy Cian Oldknow

“I could pinch myself about how well the race went,” Oldknow reflected from Spain. “I know marathons often don’t work out because of the nature of it! The plan for the race was to try get an Olympic qualifying time! So it was within expectations, but for the plan to actually pan out was incredible. I’m so excited that it did!

“I felt great for most of the race, but had to dig deep in the last 3kms to stay on the pace – it was a long 3km! Crossing the finish was surreal and still feels very magical! It was a wonderful race and opportunity!”

Cian Oldknow with her Seville Marathon medal. Photo – courtesy Cian Oldknow

“None of us saw this coming,” said her club manager at Hollywood Athletics, Manfred Seidler. “When I spoke to her after the race, she said she was as blown away as much as everyone else!  She just continues to amaze – it doesn’t stop. She just gets better and better!”

Oldknow’s coach, George Bradley, appeared to be less surprised by his charge’s success. “We were planning for a time around that level – I felt she could do about that but we didn’t know exactly how it would pan out. There’s a big difference between environmental conditions between Europe and South Africa, so it’s difficult to work out how it would go. There was supposed to be a pacing group at around 3:26 per km, but that didn’t really materialise, so she just ran her pace.

Cian Oldknow – ready for the big time. Photo – Manfred Seidler

Cian has an incredibly good instinct for pacing – a kind of an internal radar system which we relied on and which stood her in good stead. She is really just a pup in marathon running and I believe she can go faster. This needs to build over a few years to get to a higher level, but that needs to be done wisely and moderately. But in the meantime there are races and goals, so it’s a balancing act.

“We identified that her strength lies in the longer distances, rather than shorter 5000m and 10000m so we need to give her the best chance to take advantage of that strength.”

Gelant’s joy at a significant personal best time was tempered by missing the Olympic qualifier by just seconds.

Elroy Gelant – personal best marathon time in Seville. Photo: Stephen Granger

“I have mixed emotions,” Gelant admitted. “I didn’t get an Olympic qualifier but hopefully I’ll still make it on international rankings. Perhaps will race at the national championships in Durban where I could get some points to boost my ranking.

“But I’m more than happy with a PB from 2:10:31 to 2:08:56. It’s a blessing being a full time employee and still being able to run these times – it means a lot to me,” the lecturer at the School of industrial Psychology and Human Resource Management at North-West University reflected.

Elroy Gelant races to a personal best marathon in Seville. Photo – courtesy Elroy Gelant

Gelant’s pace judgement was perfect, racing at 3 min 02 sec to 3 min 03 sec pace till 35 km and passing halfway in 1:04:02 as planned.

“I faded a bit in the last 5km – it’s things I can take back to the drawing board – look at a few things I can actually improve on. So I’m satisfied, but not completely, as I know I can go a bit faster than this.

“My preparations had not been that good – I only had eight weeks, starting in December in George.  I thought I might get a 2:09:30 on eight weeks’ training, so I’m pleased, but still a lot to work on to become a 2:05 – 2:06 athlete!”

Results: Balwin Peninsula Marathon


Lehlohonolo Nyombane races through Kalk Bay 30km into the Balwin Peninsula Marathon. Photo – Stephen Granger


Top two teammates – Nedbank athletes Adele Broodryk (right) and Deanne Laubscher take the top two places at the Balwin Peninsula Marathon. Photo – Stephen Granger

Results: Balwin Peninsula Half Marathon



Top three finishers in the Balwin Peninsula Half Marathon, winner Fortunate Chidzivo with runner up Carla Molinaro (left) and third-placed Mila Geldenhuys. Photo – Stephen Granger