Athletics Mpumalanga cancels 2013 Longtom Marathon

Athletics South Africa

The 2013 Longtom Ultra and Half Marathons have been officially cancelled due to financial constraints and contracting of a major corporate title sponsor for the 2013 event has been postponed to the 2014 budgetary year. 

Therefore the 2013 event will once again be hosted without the financial assistance of a title sponsor. 

“The 2011 and 2012 events were hosted under extreme financial constraints after the withdrawal of the title sponsor of the previous 5 years, but we managed to host the race mainly due to the support of the business community of the greater Thaba Chweu area by means of water point hosting, logistical assistance and/or financial sponsorship. 

"A substantial amount of services was rendered and sponsored by Ants Events during the past two years which unfortunately cannot be offered again this year," said Loma van der Walt, race director of the Longtom Marathon.

“The constraints of the current economic climate have also impacted heavily on the business community of the greater Thaba Chweu area cutting heavily into secondary sponsorships for the 2013 event.  

"A decision had to be taken this week to either downscale the event with the funds available or to cancel the 2013 event.

"Both scenarios have serious negative implications for one of the country’s most prestigious road running events and the athletes that have come to love and support the race.  It has been an extremely difficult decision to make and was by no means taken lightly."

"However, we cannot waive the 2014 title sponsorship offer and impede the future existence of the Longtom Marathon," Loma van der Walt added.

Commenting on the earlier change of the date for the Longtom Marathon she said:  “The date for the 2013 event was changed from 30 March to 6 April due to the fact that the Longtom Pass could not be closed to traffic on race day. 

"According to the new Sports and Recreational Events Act no public liability insurance could be obtained for the event if the road was not closed to traffic on 30 March.  Therefor the change of date to 6 April.

"The change of date had nothing to do with the Two Oceans Marathon being hosted on the same date as Longtom.  We realized this early in 2012 when we applied for the date of 30 March 2013. Traditionally the Longtom Marathon is hosted on the last weekend of March.  Two Oceans is traditionally hosted over the Easter weekend with changing dates every year. 

"Every four or five years the date coincides and annually the two events are no more than two weeks apart.  Therefor the percentages of runners that do both races are miniscule. That was all taken into account when we received and confirmed the date of 30 March 2013 on the ASA running calendar.”

Organiser's note:

"We sincerely apologise for the inconveniences caused to the supporters of the Longtom Marathon.  Ants Events will endeavor to assist athletes with logistical problems pertaining to pre entries as far as possible.  Please direct all enquiries for pre entry refunds or any other assistance in writing to: or contact us on the numbers below"

  • +27 12 346 2400 (Race office)
  • +27 82 557 9604 (Loma)
  • +27 71 605 1507 (Griselda)
  • +27 71 605 1506  (Rialta)    

What do you make of this cancellation? Are you one of the athletes affected? Have your say below:

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