India Dominates Participation At South Africa’s Comrades Marathon With Largest International Runner Delegation Of 404 Athletes

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~With a total of 2354 international entries, South Africa is all set to host the 96th edition of the Comrades marathon~

~This participation is in line with South African Tourism’s efforts to promote sports tourism among Indian travellers~

Embracing the spirit of camaraderie, endurance and determination, South Africa is all set to host the 96th edition of the Comrades marathon on 11th June 2023. A total of 2354 international runners from 84 countries are expected to enter this year’s legendary race. With 404 Indian runners participating in Comrades this year, India has the highest number of international entrants in this marathon. This notable achievement is well in line with South African Tourism’s ongoing efforts to position the country as a preferred destination for adventure and sports tourism among Indian travellers.

Comrades Marathon in South Africa is also known as the world’s largest, oldest and most prestigious ultramarathon, covering approximately 88 kilometres between the cities of Durban and Pietermaritzburg in the KwaZulu-Natal province. Over the years, the race has attracted thousands of runners from across the globe who aim to complete the challenging course within the strict time limit of 12 hours. The event is known for its scenic but demanding terrain, which tests the physical and mental strength of the participants.

The presence of Indian athletes at the Comrades will further emphasize the global allure and significance of this iconic event. Notably, this year also marks the momentous milestone of 30 years of bilateral relations between India and South Africa. As these two nations celebrate their enduring friendship and partnership, the participation of Indian runners in the Comrades Marathon serves as a testament to the strong bond shared between the people of both countries.

Extending her heartfelt congratulations to the Indian runners as they prepare to participate in the marathon, Ms. Neliswa Nkani, Hub Head, Middle East, India and South East Asia, South African Tourism said“It is such an honour and delight to see that a record-breaking number of 404 Indian runners will be taking part in this year’s Comrades Marathon. As they embark on this extraordinary journey, they carry the best wishes of both their homeland, India, and their gracious hosts, South Africa. May they achieve personal triumphs and create lasting memories during their journey in the Rainbow Nation.”

Some of the popular runners who will be flying to the Rainbow Nation for the celebrated Comrades marathon are Satish Gujran, Dr. Anand Patil and Kashyap Mody amongst others. Expressing his excitement to participate in the Comrades for the 13th time, Mr. Satish Gujran said, “This year, we have the largest delegation of runners from India ever, which makes it even more exciting. Despite having completed 12 Comrade runs already, each year brings a new lesson for me. I, along with my students, am incredibly eager to represent India at the Comrades this year!”

Dr. Anand Patil, who will be participating in the marathon for the 10th time, expressed his heartfelt enthusiasm. He said, “South Africa, and particularly Durban, feels like a second home to me. The excitement I feel is akin to a joyous homecoming. We have dear friends there, and we cherish the camaraderie and vibrant atmosphere of the Comrades. It motivates me to stay in shape and provides me with a broad and positive perspective on life.”

As the countdown to the 96th Comrades Marathon commences, South Africa eagerly awaits the remarkable display of human tenacity, unity, and triumph that has made this race a beacon of inspiration and a true testament to the indomitable human spirit.

At present, the destination enjoys great connectivity with extremely short layovers across most major international airlines. Several stop-over flights fly from India to South Africa, including Emirates, Qatar Airways, Ethiopian Airlines, Kenya Airways and Air Seychelles. Travellers can apply for visas via VFS, where the processing time is extremely short, with visas available within 5-7 working days from the date of application.

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