Updated: January 13, 2016

Caroline Wostmann is one of five elite athletes who have joined KPMG Running Club for the 2016 season

South Africa’s newest professional running club took another step forward on Wednesday by signing two of the country’s top road runners.
The KPMG outfit revealed it had reached agreements with ultra-distance specialist Caroline Wostmann and Olympic marathon prospect Christine Kalmer.
Wostmann, a qualified chartered accountant and former Wits School of Accounting lecturer, believed the club was a perfect fit for her in preparation for her Comrades Marathon title defence in KwaZulu-Natal in May.
“As a lecturer in the art of accounting, I am easily able to identify with the KPMG brand,” said Wostmann, who previously turned out for the Nedbank Running Club.
“I enjoy the family atmosphere of the club and am excited to play my part in the development of the amazing junior athletes at KPMG.
“I had constructive discussions with the KPMG management team and believe the support I will receive from the club will be of huge benefit to me.”
Having secured their highest profile signing thus far, KPMG head of marketing Pierre Jacobs felt Wostmann’s role as an ambassador would open a new chapter for the club.
Officially launched in September last year, the KPMG outfit attracted many of the country’s top junior athletes last season, and took early steps to launch a development programme by opening an academy at Voorentoe High School in Joburg and supporting the Endurocad Academy in the Western Cape.
With Wostmann and Kalmer joining the likes of Jenna Challenor and Nolene Conrad, however, the club was already starting to make waves in the senior ranks.
Just four months after its launch, KPMG threatened to challenge the nation’s top professional clubs in 2016, with Nedbank, Maxed Elite, Boxer and others expected to face an onslaught of athletes clad in blue.
“Our aim in 2016 is to add to the numerous provincial and national titles we’ve already won with our juniors and seniors in 2015 on the track and cross country, by competing aggressively in the ultras (on the road) as well,” Jacobs said.
“Caroline gives us the momentum to start constructing that assault.”
Kalmer was equally pleased to have penned a deal with the club.
Having clocked 2:33:43 in Valencia in November, in only her second marathon, she was leading the Olympic qualifying race seven months ahead of the Rio Games.
“I am working harder than I’ve ever worked to achieve my goal to perform well at the Olympic Games, should I make the team this year, and joining KPMG has given me the opportunity to do even more,” said Kalmer, who holds down a full-time job as a civil engineer.
Aside from Wostmann and Kalmer, the club also confirmed it had signed with three other promising senior athletes.
Keneilwe Sesing, who finished sixth at the Cape Town Marathon in September in 2:43:38 on her 42km debut, Olympic steeplechase prospect Tumisang Monnatlala and 19-year-old Thandi Sehohle would also run in the club’s colours this season.