Rene Kalmer has been forced to pull out of her quest to become the first woman to record five SPAR 10km Challenge titles in a season, after an earlier case of Achilles tendinosis returned during her training for the World Half Marathon in Bulgaria last week. Kalmer is pictured at the launch of the Pretoria leg of the SPAR Women’s Challenge on Wednesday the 6 June 2012, at the Atterbury theatre in Pretoria. Photo: Reg CaldecottRene Kalmer says while she is disappointed to have pulled out of tomorrow’s Johannesburg SPAR 10km Challenge, she is looking forward to becoming 100% injury free.

Kalmer, who has already won the Grand Prix Series after winning the first four races, was speaking after withdrawing from tomorrow’s race because of Achilles tendinosis.

“I have been struggling with the injury since before the Olympics, but I was dealing with it and was doing fine,” a dejected Kalmer says.

“I started feeling pain again at the World Half Marathon in Bulgaria last week. When I started training again on Thursday and was trying to do strides, it was really painful. I made the decision yesterday to pull out of the race, although it is very disappointing.”

Race organiser Bruce Davidson says although it’s disappointing that Kalmer will not get the chance to go for a clean sweep of titles this year, the race will still be entertaining.

“We knew Rene was carrying an injury and she was very clear and concise in her message to me this morning. We wish her well in her recovery, and she has our full support.”

“That being said we have a very good field of runners and this has opened things up a bit. The race will now be on for second position in the Grand Prix standings and we will have a real battle on our hands.”

Kalmer says her concentration is now on getting to a point where she is 100% injury free. She is already looking ahead to prepare for next year.