gerda steyn comrades marathon
The 97th Comrades Marathon will take place on Sunday, 9 June. Photo: Instagram @gerdasteyn

Home » Comrades Marathon on Sunday: Will Gerda Steyn participate?

Comrades Marathon on Sunday: Will Gerda Steyn participate?

Not only will SA’s ultra-marathon queen Gerda Steyn compete in this weekend’s Comrades Marathon, she’ll start as the overwhelming favourite.

06-06-24 16:40
gerda steyn comrades marathon
The 97th Comrades Marathon will take place on Sunday, 9 June. Photo: Instagram @gerdasteyn

Not only will South Africa’s ultra-marathon queen Gerda Steyn be competing in this weekend’s Comrades Marathon, she will start as the overwhelming favourite.

Sunday, 9 June’s race will be the 97th edition of the Ultimate Human Race and the 49th ‘up’ run from Durban to Pietermaritzburg.


The race will start at 05:30 at the Durban City Hall and will end 12 hours later at 17:30 at the Hollywoodbets Scottsville Racecourse.

The official route distance is 85.91km, making this year’s race the shortest ever Comrades Marathon – in what will be good news for the 20 500 expected starters.

So don’t be surprised to read about new records being set around lunch time on Sunday!

Steyn, 34, is a two-time Comrades Marathon winner – and holder of both the ‘up’ and ‘down’ run records.

In 2019 Steyn set the ‘up’ run record, crossing the line in a time of 5:58:53.

In last year’s race, Steyn broke the ‘down’ run record when she finished in a time of 5:44.54.

Steyn’s stiffest competition will likely come from Adele Broodryk, Carla Molinaro, Alexandra Morozova and Caitriona Jennings.



Leonid Shvetsov (Russia) – 5.24.39 (set in 2008)


Gerda Steyn (South Africa) – 5.58.53 (set in 2019)


Runners competing in Sunday, 9 June’s Comrades Marathon will do so in near perfect weather conditions, according to the South African Weather Service (SAWS).

The minimum expected temperature in Durban on Sunday is 13 degrees Celsius. Sunrise is at 06:47 meaning the first hour and a quarter will be run in the dark.

The wind will be 9km/h in a north-northwest direction.

The maximum temperature in Pietermaritzburg is forecast to be 20 degrees Celsius with the same 9km/h wind speed out the north-west.

No rain is forecast for the day.


With its focus on putting runners first and in response to runner requests and ongoing efforts to ensure that participants have the best possible chance of finishing this year’s Ultimate Human Race, the Comrades Marathon Association (CMA) has revised the final route cut-off.

CMA Race & Operations Manager Ann Ashworth has confirmed that the CMA Board has approved the adjustment to the final cut-off at the 79.1km mark at Mkondeni (Top of Polly Shortts) from 11:10 to 11:20, giving the backmarker runners an added advantage to finish this year’s race.

Runners are advised to take note that this decision was taken after the final cut-offs had been published in the official 2024 Comrades Marathon souvenir magazine and the 2024 Final Race Instructions (including the International Athlete Guide).

For this reason, the final cut-off reflected in the official race guide and final instructions is 10 minutes faster than the time that will be imposed on 9 June.

The finalised cut-offs are as follows:

Winston Park (Caltex Garage)29.656.44:45:0010:15
Drummond (Halfway)42.643.36:20:0011:50
Cato Ridge (N3 Subway)56.629.38:10:0013:40
Umlaas Road67.518.49:40:0015:10
Mkondeni (Top of Polly Shortts)79.16.811:20:0016:50
Finish Line85.91km12:00:0017:30


The Comrades Marathon, known as ‘The Ultimate Human Race’, is the world’s oldest and largest ultramarathon.

As just over 20 500 runners prepare to tackle the course, spectators will no doubt be gearing up to cheer them along their journey to the finish line.

In an effort to assist supporters and seconds in meeting their runners along the race route, the Comrades Marathon Association (CMA) has issued a list of some prime spectator spots along the route:

Pinetown (St. Johns Ave)20km
1st runner ETA: 06:45
Hillcrest (intersection R103 / Shongweni Rd)31km
1st runner ETA: 07:26
Hillcrest (intersection R103 / Hospital Rd)32,5km
1st runner ETA: 07:30
Hillcrest (intersection R103 / Kassier Rd)34km
1st runner ETA: 07:35
Alverstone (intersection R103 / Alverstone Rd)40km
1st runner ETA: 07:58
Drummond (intersection R103 / Thousand Hill Dr)44km
1st runner ETA: 08:13
Inchanga (intersection R103 / Inchanga Dr)49km
1st runner ETA: 08:32
Hammarsdale (intersection R103 / Thousand Hills St)52km
1st runner ETA: 08:43
Cato Ridge (outside Dunbar Spar)57,5km
1st runner ETA: 09:03
1st runner ETA: 09:26
Lynnfield Park71,5km
1st runner ETA: 09:55
1st runner ETA: 10:12

The CMA has urged spectators not to stop at, or make use of, the Umlaas Road intersection and overpass on race day due to this remaining an active construction site with no available parking. 

Spectators and supporters are encouraged to arrive early and to park well off the road and out of the way of both traffic and race participants.


Meanwhile, in partnership with the race’s new Tier 1 partner, Cell C, the Comrades Marathon Association (CMA) has announced an unprecedented increase in prize money up for grabs at this year’s edition of The Ultimate Human Race.

In addition to the R50 000 Hot Spot prize available to the first man and the first woman through the Cell C Hot Spot located in Cato Ridge; and many other cash prizes, this year’s prize purse has been increased by a staggering R1 364 000 to a total of R4 092 000, making it the richest race not only in South Africa, but on the African continent.

Athletes finishing in the Top 10 of both the men’s and women’s races will receive the following cash prize top up from Cell C.

This prize money will be in addition to the prize money payable by the CMA.

PositionCMACell CTotal
1R550 000R275 000R825 000
2R275 000R137 500R412 500
3R198 000R99 000R297 000
4R99 000R49 500R148 500
5R77 000R38 500R115 500
6R44 000R22 000R66 000
7R38 500R19 250R57 750
8R33 000R16 500R49 500
9R27 500R13 750R41 250
10R22 000R11 000R33 000

Spectators wishing to track runners can download the official Comrades Marathon App via the Google Play and Apple App Store.