The 21km Tanganda Tea Race yesterday lived up to its expectations with over 1 000 athletes participating in the half marathon in Mutare that was won by Caniscious Nyamutsita and Caroline Mhandu in the male and female main categories respectively.
BY KENNETH NYANGANI
Nyamutsita hit the ribbon first at one hour 5 minutes and 53 seconds while Misheck Sithole came second, finishing the race with a time of 1hr 06min 06 seconds.
Munyaradzi Jari came third, following behind by just 28 seconds.
In the female main race, Mhandu emerged winner with a good time of 1hr 21min 52 seconds, beating rival Ethel Sibanda with over two minutes.
Nyamutsita, who has managed third position in the last two editions of the race, was over the moon after finally getting the gold medal.
“Finally, I have won the race. In the last two races, I have been finishing third. Interestingly, I have been leading in all those races, but falter on the last few laps of the race. This is something I have been working on,” he said.
“I am happy that this has finally paid off after working hard. This is a well-deserved win,’’ he added.
Mhandu was also excited by winning the race, which he said was in preparation for the upcoming Econet-sponsored Victoria Falls Marathon.
“It was tough, the race is difficult, but at least my endurance paid off. I am now targeting to win the Victoria Falls Marathon scheduled for next week,” he said.
National Athletics Association of Zimbabwe president Tendai Tagara saluted the sponsors.
“This is one of the most well-organised races in the country, the race is improving every year. I want to urge the sponsors to keep on the good work. At least 1 000 athletes registered to compete in the race, and in some years the race would register about 600 athletes,” he said.
The race attracted some international athletes, but failed to impress on the gruelling route.