Cape Town – The Table Mountain National Park (TMNP) is investigating an incident in which British elite ultra runner, Tom Evans, was mugged below Woodstock Cave.
Evans was mugged at knifepoint while training for the upcoming RMB Ultra-trail Cape Town race.
His wedding ring, iPhone, and a high-tech running watch worth £2 500 were stolen.
The www.dailymail.co.uk reports that the 31-year-old former British army captain was brutally robbed while training in South Africa for one of the toughest ultra-trail races in the world.
The online publication reports that Evans was left in fear of his life when he was ambushed by two robbers while out running alone on Table Mountain in Cape Town on Friday.
The report said the former Welsh Guards captain was rugby-tackled by two men close to the King’s Blockhouse, built in 1796 on Devil’s Peak, and fought back despite being outnumbered two-to-one.
The www.dailymail.co.uk reports that Evans managed to grab back his snatched mobile phone and sent the larger man packing – but the smaller mugger pulled a machete and a kitchen knife from a backpack.
Elite athlete Tom – sponsored by Red Bull and Adidas – was quoted as saying: “Once the knife was at my throat they made it very clear they would kill me if I carried on fighting so I stopped.”
At the weekend, the South African National Parks (SANParks) said it was aware of the incident involving the British ultra runner who was mugged in the northern section of Table Mountain National Park.
“Further investigations into the matter are underway, and we are committed to providing our full support throughout this process,” said Megan Taplin, TMNP Park Manager.
“We are working with the other authorities to investigate the incident and prosecute the criminal involved.
“Our priority is ensuring the well-being and safety of all users in the park.”
While the mugging incident remained a concern, SANParks issued a terse statement assuring runners: “Every event that is hosted in TMNP, including the RMB Ultra-trail Cape Town race, has a detailed safety plan in place, involving SANParks, City of Cape Town and South African Police Services forces”.
However, the assurance was cold comfort for Evans who has pulled out of the race and gone back home.
In a post on Instagram, Evans said: “Sadly as you may have heard, I will not be racing UTCT this year.
“I was attacked and mugged on the trails at knifepoint where all my possessions were stolen. I am pretty beat up but I will be physically okay.
“I have decided to go home and make sure that I am mentally alright which is something that I have always taken for granted.
“For those in Cape Town, look after yourself and those around you and please stay safe.
“It’s been an awesome year and I won’t let 2 criminals spoil my year on the trails #staysafe.”