Spaniard Pere Aurell wins Otter Africa “RETTO”

Pere Aurell wins the 2020 Otter Africa Trail Run, October 30, 2020. Photo: Marzelle van der Merwe
Winner Pere Aurell in action during the 2020 Otter African Trail Run, October 30, 2020. Photo: Peter Kirk

Pere Aurell is the new 2020 OTTER men’s champion, while South Africa’s Toni McCann took the women’s honours.

From the race organisers:

“Visiting South Africa for the first time from Spain, Pere started conservatively, aware that the first half was fast and runnable and choosing to conserve some energy in the legs for the second half which is much more technical, but his preferred type of trail.

His race strategy paid off, and he reeled in a 6min gap in the second half to catch the leaders, picking them off one at a time. He overtook Johardt van Heerden mere kilometres before the finish, and despite having nothing left in his legs, let adrenalin and that hunger for the top spot on the podium do the rest. 
Pere crossed the line just 20 seconds ahead of Johardt , the closest finish in the history of the Men’s RETTO race . The gap was so close Pere had to look back several times on the final stretch to the finish. 
He crossed the line in a time of 04:03:30, with Johardt clocking a new South African RETTO record in a time of 04:03:50. Kane Reilly, no stranger to the Otter, finished third in a time of 04:11:07. 
An incredible performance by the top three Men in this year’s Race. 

Toni McCann wins the 2020 Otter African Trail Run women’s race, October 30, 2020. Photo: Marzelle van der Merwe

A world-class performance by Toni McCann, winner of the 2020 Otter Women’s Race. Toni also broke her own record for fastest South African time by a minute and a half, finishing the RETTO in a time of 04:40:30. 
Her plan from the get go was to run her own race, and at the back of her mind her intention was to prove to herself that she could run a similar if not faster time than her 2018 RETTO where she placed 3rd. Not only did she achieve this, but as usual, with a humble grace and massive smile.

Finishing around 13min behind Toni was Bianca Tarboton. Bianca raced last year’s Otter, but had to DNF less than 1km from the start for medical reasons. She crossed the line with a smile and looking strong in a time of 04:53:01. Rounding off the podium, Spanish-Dutch sky running superstar Ragna Debats in her Otter debut ran a consistent race, finishing in a time of 05:06:59. 
Congratulations to our Women’s podium.”

Men’s 2020 RETTO Top 10 Leaderboard
1. Pere Aurell 04:03:30 (ES) 

2. Johardt Van Heerden 04:03:50 (RSA)

3. Kane Reilly 04:11:07 (RSA)

4. Daniel Claassen 04:24:36 (RSA)  

5. Christiaan Greyling 04:31:19 (RSA)

6. Rory Scheffer 04:35:13 (RSA)

7. Mvuyisi Gcogco 04:36:52 (RSA)

8. Pierre Jordaan 04:49:32 (RSA)

9. Quintin Honey 04:56:26 (RSA)

10. Timothy Chambers 04:56:34 (RSA)

Women’s 2020 RETTO Top 5 Leaderboard

1. Toni Mccann 04:40:30 (RSA)

2. Bianca Tarboton 04:53:01 (RSA)

3. Ragna Debats 05:06:59 (ES)  

4. Nicolette Griffioen 05:33:33 (RSA)

5. Mags Wright 05:40:34 (RSA)

Toni McCann celebrates winning the 2020 Otter African Trail Run, October 30, 2020. Photo: Marzelle van der Merwe