CMA @ComradesRace hosts Xiamen Delegation 26.7.2013 #Press Release

Comrades Marathon Association – Media Release: CMA hosts Xiamen Delegation

Image: CMA Vice Chairperson, Macdonald Chitja and Board Member, Cheryl Winn accepting a gift from Xiamen Municipal Bureau of Sports Director, Du Haiyang

© COMRADES MARATHON ASSOCIATION

The Comrades Marathon Association (CMA) hosted a delegation from the Chinese port city of Xiamen at Comrades Marathon House on Friday, 26 July 2013. The high powered four member delegation representing various sporting bodies in the south eastern Chinese city met with members of the CMA Board and Staff in a bid to learn more about the world’s most iconic ultra-marathon and to cement ties with the CMA on behalf of the Xiamen Marathon.

Leading the delegation was Xiamen Municipal Bureau of Sports Director, Du Haiyang who was extremely impressed by the CMA’s long and illustrious history as well as its high ranking in the global road-running fraternity. Haiyang went on to highlight the parallels between the CMA and the ruling party of China; both of which go back to their origins in the year 1921.

CMA Vice Chairperson, Macdonald Chitja welcomed the visitors, saying ‘This is a wonderful opportunity for the two road-running organisers to collaborate and share valuable knowledge with each other. The CMA has been at the forefront of impeccable race organising and we are always happy and willing to share our long-founded knowledge and experience with international road running organisers.’

The aim of the visitors to our country is to find out more about the world’s biggest and oldest ultra-marathon and to create a more cohesive working relationship between the Comrades Marathon and the Xiamen Marathon. A CMA delegation was sent to the Xiamen International Marathon in 2011 upon invitation from the Race Organising Committee there.

Following in those footsteps, another invitation has been extended to the CMA to be a part of the 2014 Xiamen Marathon on 2 January. The plan of the CMA is to identify two up and coming Comrades Marathon runners, in conjunction with KwaZulu-Natal Athletics, who will accompany the CMA team and participate in the 2014 Xiamen International Marathon.

It is worth noting that the Xiamen International Marathon has been held every year since 2003 and carries the accolade of an International Amateur Athletics Federation (IAAF) Gold Label Road Race for five consecutive years. The City of Xiamen also carries the accolade of being China’s "most romantic leisure city" as well as being ranked as the country’s second "most suitable city for living".

CMA General Manager, Gary Boshoff says, ‘We are proud to host the Xiamen delegation, having done so for the past two years now; thereby creating working partnerships with international races. The Xiamen International Marathon is not only an esteemed Gold Label Race but also a member of the Association of International Marathons (AIMS) and like the Comrades Marathon, is known for its immaculate organising and world class standards.’

Statement issued by the Comrades Marathon Association’s Media Officer, Delaine Cools on Friday, 26 July 2013

For an interview, please contact:

· CMA General Manger, Gary Boshoff on 082 805 2926

· CMA Vice Chairperson, Macdonald Chitja on 083 645 6422

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