Tadu Nare has won yet another race in the SPAR Grand Prix Series.
What has changed as the Ethiopian continues to degrade the status of the popular women’s 10km race as a sporting event?
The star of the Nedbank Running Club might very well be given the title due to her dominance in the competition.
Nare, who won the championship the previous year after dominating all six races, is poised to defend her crown after winning the Johannesburg leg of the series on Sunday morning at Marks Park in addition to the first three races.
She finished first in the initial race in Gqeberha behind Helalia Johannes and second in Durban, Mbombela, Tshwane, and here in Johannesburg. Nare now leads Salem Gabre, who is in second position, by eight points with 149.
Helalia Johannes of Namibia (34:07) and her fellow countrywoman Salem Gabre were beaten by Nare, who finished in 33:32. (34:12). Glenrose Xaba of South Africa finished in fourth place with a time of 34:25.
It’s interesting that Nare said later that she didn’t anticipate winning today.
“Due to the half marathon I ran last week in Copenhagen, I didn’t believe I would win. I didn’t get enough sleep. I predicted Helalia would triumph. I was expecting her to catch up when I started running at nine kilometers, but she didn’t, so I am glad I won.
The marathon in Marks Park got underway in a spectacular way when Johannes stumbled during a commotion with other runners, bruising her ankle. However, the seasoned runner rose up and demonstrated her racing skills to finish second, passing Gabre in the last few meters.
The young Ethiopian said that Johannes’ performance astounded her: “It was a really tight finish. I fought Helalia, and I believe I would have prevailed if there had been a few more meters to go. However, I’m content that I’m still in second place overall in the Series.
On October 23, Cape Town will host the series’ final race, and Nare will remain champion unless she withdraws or is defeated by Gabre by nine places.