The names of the speakers for the 20th World Congress of the Association of International Marathons and Distance Races (AIMS), to be hosted by the Comrades Marathon Association (CMA) in Durban on 29 and 30 May, have been announced.
The theme of the Congress, which will showcase some of the continent’s great African runners, is “Africa: The Home of Distance Runners”.
Among the speakers will be Blanche Moila, the first black woman to be awarded Springbok colours and a former South African Sportswoman of the Year; three-time winner of the Boston Marathon, Ibrahim Hussein; and Olympic medallist, world champion and former multiple world record holder, Elana Meyer.
Renowned exercise physiologist Professor Tim Noakes, the author of The Lore of Running, will also be part of the notable line-up.
The keynote speaker will be Luis Felipe Posso. One of the world’s top sports management agents, including in the worlds of athletics and football, he has represented some of the top talents in global sport including South Africa’s Josiah Thugwane, the 1996 Atlanta Olympic Games marathon champion.
Posso’s address will focus on “The Emergence, Impact and Dominance of African Runners on the World of Distance Racing”.
Personal experiences and perspectives
Hussein, Moila and Meyer will talk about their personal experiences and perspectives on running, while Noakes will present an interesting take on the “Historical Reasons Why African Runners are Successful”.
Race organisers will also have the opportunity to promote their races to over 50 000 runners and visitors at the Bonitas-Comrades Expo.
The Congress will culminate in all delegates attending the finish of the 89th edition of the Comrades Marathon on 1 June, where they will be accommodated in a special AIMS marquee on the finishing straight at the Sahara Stadium Kingsmead cricket ground in Durban.