Records in danger at HMC this Sunday


Words: Catharina Robbertze | Photo:

The fifth Helderberg Mountain Challenge (HMC) will be taking place this Sunday and it is safe to say the racing at the front of the field is going to be fast and furious.

With Kane Reilly, Bernard Rukadza and Duncan o’Regan (winner of the Jonkershoek Mountain Challenge two weeks ago) as well as top female runners, Katya Soggot and Robyn Ferrar entered in the full HMC 24km, all current records are in danger of being broken.

The epic 24km route has developed quite the reputation since it was first run in 2011 and with almost 2 000m ascent and an equal descent in such a short distance, this reputation is well deserved. It is an extremely technical route, demanding utmost concentration from runners as they take on the narrow rocky trail up and down the mountainside. A visit to the remote Helderberg Dome makes it equally spectacular, while going up West Peak twice adds a huge psychological challenge.

The current men’s record was set by AJ Calitz in 2012 when he won in a time of 3:06:31 and Landie Greyling holds the women’s record with a time of 3:43:24 set in 2013. This year’s strong field paired with a near-perfect weather prediction for Sunday means the top runners will definitely be gunning for these times.

A sold out HMC Lite 15km field predicts more strong competition in this distance while the HMR 10km still has some entries left but promises to sell out in the next few days.

The HMC is the second race of the newly formed Mountain Challenge Series and Duncan o’Regan is sure to go all out for his second win of the Series and the possible prize money bonus of R 5 000. The male and female Series winner will receive R 3 000 and a R 5 000 bonus if they also manage to win all three races in the Series. The last race in the Series is the 60km Marloth Mountain Challenge (MMC) at Swellendam in August.

For more information on the Mountain Challenge Series and the HMC visit the website at