Ndhlovu Posts Time Of 2:31:16 In First Career Marathon
DULUTH, Minn. – After wrapping up his junior year on the cross country and track and field teams for UNCP, Pardon Ndhlovu competed in his first career marathon at the Grandma's Marathon in Duluth, Minn., with a time of 2:31.16 on Saturday in an attempt to qualify for the 2012 London Olympics.
Ndhlovu intended on qualifying as a member of the Zimbabwe team, but despite being on pace for the first half of the marathon, his pace slowed as he crossed the finish line 14 minutes off of the qualifying time.
He finished 31st overall in the race out of 4,900 runners and 3,030 men, as well as 24th out of 1,212 males in the 19-34 age group.
Ndhlovu began the marathon by hitting the 10K mark with a time of 31:43 - a mark less than 20 seconds off the time he ran at the NCAA National Championships to garner a fourth place finish and grab all-American status. He continued on his 5:10 mile pace and held a time of 1:07:38 at the halfway mark (13.1 miles), which was two one-hundredths of a second faster than his Myrtle Beach Half Marathon record set in February.
At the 16.2 mile mark, he slowed his pace to a 5:14 mile with a time of 1:24:46 with the final 10 miles remaining in the race. Within a span of 3.1 miles, he dropped to a pace of 5:24 with a time of 1:43:59 at the 19.3 mile mark and then to a 5:35 mile pace at the 23.1 mile mark with a time of 2:08:58.
Down the final stretch, after hitting the 25 mile mark with a time of 2:22:15, he finished the 26.2 miles at 10:17 a.m. Central Standard Time after running for more than 2-1/2 hours.
To qualify for the Zimbabwe marathon team for the 2012 London Olympics, a runner needs to finish the marathon race in the A-Standard time of 2:14:00 or the B-Standard of time of 2:17:00. The country takes the top three athletes for the race and, if less than three runners have run an A-Standard time, the fastest runner(s) from the B-Standard times qualify on the team.
To view the results click HERE.