Fri. Apr 12th, 2024

In a shocking revelation, the Comrades Marathon Association (CMA) announced the disqualification of 58 athletes from participating in the upcoming 2024 Comrades Marathon due to cheating incidents during the 2023 race. The CMA identified various rule violations, leading to the rejection of these athletes’ entries for the upcoming event.

According to the CMA, 16 athletes had their entries rejected after it was discovered that they had someone else run their 2023 qualifying marathon on their behalf. Additionally, three athletes were found to have used another entrant’s qualifying marathon to enter the 2023 race. Furthermore, 27 runners provided false qualifying times, either not running or finishing the marathon or running slower than the qualifying time.

The association revealed that one athlete participated in the 2023 race using another athlete’s race number, while five athletes allowed others to run the race with their personal numbers. Two athletes had their entries rejected for completing the 2023 race as a relay, and four athletes faced disqualification for taking shortcuts between Pietermaritzburg and Durban on Race Day in 2023.

CMA Race & Operations Manager, Ann Ashworth, issued a stern warning against cheating and emphasized a zero-tolerance policy. She urged entrants to comply with all rules and regulations, stating that the CMA would take strong action against those found in violation. The association aims to enforce race rules strictly, particularly focusing on inaccurate or fraudulent qualifying times.

Ashworth highlighted that participants starting in incorrect seeding batches, failing to complete the entire race on foot, disregarding race officials’ instructions, or damaging CMA property would face disciplinary action. As the 97th edition of the marathon approaches, scheduled for Sunday, June 9, the CMA remains committed to maintaining the integrity of the event and ensuring fair competition.

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