About the Tembisa Street Mile
In June 2011, Mark Struwig (The Club Manager at Powerade AC ,Race Director of The Vodacom Challenge Half Marathon and Director at The Fastener –Network) gave Donald the left over race material from the Vodacom Country Challenge Road Race to do an 8km and 3km fun run and walk in his township of Tembisa. The main purpose being the revival of athletics in the township because of there were/are few successful township race and some just get cancelled because of sponsorship reasons. With the help of his colleagues at The Fastener Network (Pty) Ltd and his Elim Athletics Club friend Action Ramaboea fun run was staged successfully on the 3rd December 2011 and had about 400 runners.
After the successful hosting of the fun run, Donald conceptualized the street mile race to cater for middle distance athletes, the boys and girls of 15 years and under. The reason behind was to try to encourage the young ones to do track. We brought the Elite Athletes as most of them are role models to the young ones who look up to them.
The inaugural Mile took place on the 1st December 2012 with attracted mostly athletes from the neighbouring townships of Alexandra, Diepsloot, Daveyton, Soweto and Katlehong. An 8km fun run and walk was incorporated in the race so as to have spectators for the Elite Mile (the main event).The race was staged as a mixed race had 40 athletes taking part. Dumisane Hlaselo from the University of Free State won the race in a time of 00:04:13. Lebo Phalula from Soweto running for Mr Price won the women’s race in a time of 00:04:55.
The participation of Johan Cronje (also from the University of Free State) in the 2013 race (after winning a bronze medal at the IAAF World Championship in Russia. The only South African athlete to medal at that race) race raised the status of the mile. Cronje won the race in a new record of 00:04:10 .He gave away the record incentive, R1000 Sportsman’s Warehouse voucher to one of the kids participated in the youth mile.
Lorraine Novela became the first Tembisan to win women’s the mile in a time of 00:05:06. The 2013 race was hosted by Tembisa Athletics Club.
In 2014 the race became an official race (TomTom as the headline sponsor), sanctioned by Central Gauteng Athletics .The 2014 race saw the inaugural 10km road race as a draw card for spectators for the elite mile. The men’s title went to Lucky Mohale (a resident of Tembisa). Lucky crossed won the race in a time of 00: 29:51 and Lebo Phalula crossed the line in 00:35:43.