About the Race


The Comrades Ultramarathon is a grueling 89-kilometer race that has been held every year since 1921, except for a few years during World War II. It’s rare to find an ultramarathon with more than a few hundred runners, so Comrades is in a league of its own with many thousand. You’ll feel like you’re running one of the World Marathon Majors, taking off from Pietermaritzburg to Durban (or vice versa) in streets teeming with runners. In fact, Comrades is comparable in size to the LA Marathon! So get ready for some dodging and weaving if you’re on the faster end. Starting corrals only do so much to separate pace groups.

“Any doorway that leads you to a deeper understanding of who you are is worthwhile.”

- Rodney Yee

The goal of Comrades is to celebrate human spirit over adversity, and it is famous for the camaraderie it fosters among runners, who support each other to collectively reach the finish line. It alternates between “up” and “down” years, depending on whether the race is net uphill or downhill. Either way, you’ll have a true Comrades experience if you join a pace group – known as buses – and stick with them. The pacesetters are keenly focused on getting their bus to the finish line on time, and you’ll remember the people running alongside you for the rest of your life. After the race, you can hop on a short flight to Kruger, where you can do a self-drive of one of the largest game reserves in Africa! If you plan ahead and snag accommodation in the park, you can go on guided sunrise and sunset drives to see some of the animals you might miss on your own. Then you can get up close and personal with the animals at C.A.R.E. Baboon Sanctuary or Riverside Wildlife Rehabilitation Center, both of which care for orphaned and disabled baboons and vervets.

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