Cheats Exposed at the Comrades Marathon? You Decide – Run Talk SA Episode 32

UPDATE 15 JULY 2014: Our Comrades Marathon Cheat seems to have done it again at the 2014 Comrades Marathon. After checking out the post below, have a look at the latest Comrades Marathon cheating incident.


This may well be the most explosive episode of Run Talk SA yet. We feature one guest on this week’s show. Mark Dowdeswell presents some damning evidence that points to runners cheating at the Comrades Marathon.

Mark, who is a Comrades Marathon runner as well as a lecturer at the University of the Witwatersrand, has done statistical analysis on various aspects on the results data that is produced by the Comrades Marathon and Championchip. Through this analysis Mark discovered a few irregularities and presents his findings on this week’s Run Talk SA.

Hard evidence of cheating at the Comrades Marathon

Mark will show you how one runner, who’s details are known to Run Talk SA, went ‘missing’ during the race. This particular runner was not picked up by the timing mats only to ‘reappear ‘ later in the race. However the split that this runner ran in that ‘missing’ portion of the race seems virtually impossible to comprehend.

In our opinion, the hard evidence points to the fact that the said runner exited the race route, climbed in a motor vehicle only to rejoin the race at a later stage.  Have a  listen to this week’s Run Talk SA and make up your own mind.  We would love to hear your opinion, you can tweet us @RunTalkSA, pop a message on our Facebook wall or email us.

If you would like to share this information with your fellow runners (And we should all share this information if we are serious about ridding the sport of this scurge) you can click here to Tweet this —> If you are a runner you want to see this: Cheats exposed at the Comrades Marathon via @RunTalkSA or click here to share it to your Facebook profile.

As discussed in the show, below are graphs of the last two up runs to show the split difference through the entire field. As you can see in 2011 there were a lot more negative splits than in 2013 (The extreme weather conditions were probably to blame for that phenomenon). You can also see in 2011 not one runner ran a negative split of over an hour whereas in 2013 there were three. The runner that we discussed on this week’s show had the biggest negative split of all. He ran the second half almost a 1 hour 40 minutes faster than he ran the first!

Statistical Analysis of the 2011 Comrades Marathon Up run
The positive/negative split of the entire field for the 2011 Comrades Marathon Up run
The 2013 Comrades Marathon Up Run Splits
The postive/negative split breakdown for the entire field of the 2013 Comrades Marathon.

The Ulitmate Comrades Marathon Resource GuideWe have put together our list of Comrades Marathon resources that we think everyone should know about.

The Ultimate Comrades Marathon Resource Guide is a great starting point if you are just getting going on your Comrades Marathon journey as well as a fantastic companion if you are an experienced Comrades Marathon runner.

This Comrades Marathon resource covers everything from training, nutrition, injury prevention and treatment to the Comrades Marathon route and what to expect on Comrades Marathon race day.

Complete the form below and we’ll send you the link to the resource guide absolutely free (Privacy policy – We hate spam as much as you do so we will never sell or rent your email to anyone).

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