LONG-distance road runner Lusapho April jetted off to the US yesterday to take part in the 118th edition of theBoston Marathon on Easter Monday.
The run will be his second high- profile global standard event after the Uitenhage-based April finished 15th at the World Half Marathon Championships held in Copenhagen, Denmark, last month.
He won the Umhlobo Wenene FM 10km race in 29 minutes 23 seconds in Port Elizabeth last week.
April, 32, said he had used the 10km event to sharpen up for the Boston Marathon.
“I’m ready and healthy for the upcoming event. I go to each and every race with the intention of winning. Nothing is going to change for the Boston event.”
April will be joining a world squad of elite runners, including Dennis Kimetto, Meb Keflezighi, Moses Mossop and Wilson Chebet.
He qualified for this star-studded team after winning the prestigious Hannover Marathon in Germany in May last year in a career-best time of 2hr 8min 32 sec.
He and the other stars will team up as members of the John Hancock Elite Athlete Team of 46 runners from 13 countries.
The team includes Olympic medallists and winners of major world marathons including those held in Chicago, New York City, Tokyo and Boston.
The team members have won more than 80 global marathons individually.
Last year the race was disrupted by a bombing near the finish line.
In November, April finished a credible third in two hours, nine minutes and 45 seconds in his New York Marathon debut. – Mthetho Ndoni