• September 28th, 2020

Helalia rues missed chances as Covid-19 bites on…SPAR Women’s Challenge Series cancelled

Maurice Kambukwe

Namibia’s long-distance runner Helalia Johannes says she is disappointed with the cancellation of all six legs of the popular SPAR Women’s 10km Challenge Series scheduled for this year as a result of Covid-19 but understands health matters remains a priority.
The cancellation of the six races that were slated for Nelson Mandela Bay‚ Cape Town‚ Durban‚ Pietermaritzburg‚ Tshwane and Johannesburg between June and October is a massive blow to elite athletes who earn a living from these events.

The overall winner on points at the end of the series takes home about N$190 000. Johannes is the reigning champion of the SPAR Women’s 10km Challenge Series and was set to defend her title but with the cancellation, she will have to put her title defence on hold. Speaking to New Era Sport yesterday, Johannes said it’s a sad outcome that the race has been cancelled due to the Covid-19 pandemic, as a lot of preparation and hard work was invested with the hope of defending her title.

“It’s a bad thing that the women challenge was called off as I was looking forward to it; I’ve been working hard towards this competition with the hope of defending my title this year. But on the other hand, we have to understand why the organisers decided to cancel the competition. We have to understand the situation in which we are right now. Covid-19 is really a serious and deadly virus,” she said. Johannes added that not only will she be missing out on the SPAR Women’s 10km Challenge Series but also on other races that are bound to be cancelled as a result of the widespread virus.

“So many competitions that I was looking forward to are being cancelled or getting cancelled. I’ve also missed the Doha Marathon that was also called off due to Covid-19. I was also looking at taking part in the Colombian half marathon that debuted last year and also the coming Olympics that have been postponed due to Covid-19. The virus has disrupted almost every competition I was set to take part in.

Staff Reporter
2020-06-29 08:45:33 | 2 months ago

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