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My Running History

I am 38 years old and have a wonderful family, Donnette and Kids, who I adore.

I grew up in Pietermaritzburg, KwaZulu Natal, I have always had a passion for sports and took part in as many sports at school as possible. Cricket, Hockey, Soccer, Golf, Running, Athletics, Rugby, indoor Hockey. I am fiercely competitive and I always want to be at the top.
I matriculated in 1993 and in 1994 moved to Johannesburg. I got involved in coaching Hockey at a sports club, and had a sales job. In 1998 I travelled to the USA, Los Angeles for a couple of weeks, the intention was to stay there indefinitely, but after 2 weeks I decided that I would return to SA, and find my niche in my own country.

This is how I got started in the sports business:

I started a Close Corporation and contacted many of mf friends that had gone on to play professional cricket, and started assisting some of them with sponsorship and contract negotiations.

I have been fortunate to travel, and have visited, India (What a great place), Sri-Lanka, Zimbabwe, Kenya, Germany, London, Wales, Switzerland, France, Belgium, and as few other places.

I got involved within the Kaizer Chiefs football Club for about 7 years. I wore various hats over this time, Commercial and Licensing programmes, General Manager and Sales Manager for their Magazine, and then later General manager of J.A.K.E Productions, (largely responsible for their events and marketing)

August 2008, I relocated from Johannesburg to KwaZulu Natal to go vegetable farming, but after a few acts of God, lost the farm from damage to crops, and just couldn’t get the farm back up on its feet.

I start at CMA, (Comrades Marathon Association) in March 2009 as the Media and Communications Coordinator.  As I was officially the media man and the spokesperson for the CMA, I had to get to know everything about the race in a short space of time. But I coped, I think. I am soon doing press releases, and seeing my name in the paper often was quiet nice actually.

With being in my position I was fortunate to be able to mix with the top athletes, and it is then I start to run again, and training starts.
I did some training runs with the likes of Bongmusa Mthembu, Petros Sosibo and their group of  guys and they all talk and being me, I like to help people, and these guys are struggling to get shoes to run in, and they are all top athletes. This wasn’t right? So I make a few calls to people I know at Nike, and they help me out with sponsoring the guys. I then start to look into what these guys are getting from Clubs and what they are earning. I am completely shocked and cannot understand why top athletes are struggling like they are. I look at the soccer and rugby guys and they are earning big bucks.

I then decide to go back into managing these athletes.

This was going to cost me, and struggling to get out of the “toilet” myself I advise the guys of the percentages they will have to pay for my services. I take into account that they don’t have much and go with, If I don’t make them money then I don’t get anything myself. So it’s a win win for all. But I do this whilst working for the CMA.

I spent many hours and early mornings fetching and carrying the guys to training and races, all at my expense, but did so with a goal in mind. What you put in you will get out later, you know spend some money to make some money.
I will add that I always kept my CMA work separate from looking after athletes, and only did the athletes work after hours, so I had some seriously long days.

After Comrades 2010 I decide to go back on my own and  into full time management of athletes.
I have been involved with  and managed the careers of Stephen Muzhingi, Bongmusa Mthembu, Claude Moshiywa, Collen Makaza, Petros Sosibo, and a few others from South Africa.  I have now expanded into Kenya and Zimbabwe

Make no mistake this is a seriously difficult job, and extremely hard work,  but I know that I can make a difference and my main aim is to now get these guys earning the right money they deserve, and to do my bit. However big or small my contribution may be, I hope to change athletics in SA to be more of a professional sport and get into line with the likes of the other sports codes.

I am hugely passionate about what I do and am thankful to have a wonderful supporting wife and family which allows me to keep following my dreams and aspirations.

Comrades 2011, was so proud of Stephen for winning his 3rd Comrades and Claude for his 3rd position.

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7 Comments
  1. Steven permalink

    Great work Craig! Wish you all the best in turning these great athlete’s into having a more stable financial support and in doing so allow them to train more productively and hopefully excel further in their sport.

    • Thank you Steven. We have a long road ahead, but with the right backing from sponsors we will get there which will allow for the guys and girls to be given an opportunity to reach their potential. Thank for reading and for the comment. I will keep updating a to how we get on and as and when new sponsor comes on board. Hopefully soon, so we can kick on. Cheers
      Craig

    • Thanks Steven. Am working hard at it, we just need to get the right sponsors on board the we will reach the goals we want to. Thanks for reading 🙂 Cheers

  2. plustenner permalink

    Made me really sad when I read that those guys didn’t even have shoes to run in! You and your wife are doing an amazing job, and I really hope you get the rewards for all the hard work you put in

    • Thank you. It is a sad state of affairs when the other sports codes get all the funding, and then these guys get nothing. We spend our own money on these guys to, yes I will be honest to make a living too, but without the support from corporate sponsors, who are very few and far between it is very difficult. To much focus is on developing at a young age, when we have the guys that are there now and just need that little oush asnd will produce results.

      I am committed and we will get there and show these guys, and then they will all come running and want to take some of the glory when they have never been there. This is what happens.

      As they say, if you not i the race you cant win. So we are here in the race in a big way and we will succeed, All of us.

      It is awesome support from people like you that make it easier. Thank you for always being there! 🙂

  3. Andrew Barnes permalink

    Do you deal with any Track athletes at all?

    • Hi Andrew, not at the moment but I will be looking into that during the course of 2013. I wanted to get the road side going smoothly and then get involved in the track side of athletics.

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