Comrades Marathon stars, the Russian twins Olesya and Elena Nurgalieva, may have won gold medals on Sunday, but were all the poorer after being robbed of their belongings.
The sisters, who were the first and second women to cross the finish line, were victims of theft during the marathon, along with 1999 Comrades winner, Jaroslaw Janicki.
Clothing retailer Mr Price, which sponsors all three runners, last night confirmed that the three had been robbed and that the matter had been reported to the police.
Mr Price athletics manager Chris Lionnet said that the team’s van had been parked at the second watering point for runners at the bottom of Field’s Hill.
“Someone broke into the van and stole all the equipment, including items belonging to the twins, Janicki and one of the staff managers,” he said.
Lionnet said that the robbers took Janicki’s hotel key and went straight back to the Southern Sun North Beach hotel and cleared his room of all his belongings.
“Information we received from the hotel showed that one man broke into the room,” Lionnet said.
He said that all Janicki’s clothes had been stolen along with his money and passport.
“We bought him new clothes and will make arrangements to get a visa and passports organised for him,” Lionnet said.
Southern Sun management said last night that it was not at liberty to disclose any details of guests. – The Mercury