The club’s first race was on 3 February 1974, a 20km event that attracted 139 starters of which 137 runners finished. This was described as a ‘tough race’ by most entrants. The following year, in 1975, the club race was lengthened to 32km and the RAC Tough One was born with the start and finish at the Randburg Sports Complex. 15 red flags were required for the marshals and the winner received a cup and a gift voucher for R20.
The Tough One became a must-do event on the running calendar and from 1992 to 1994, it won the Race of the Year Trophy. In 1997, a 5km race was introduced to go with the 32km to accommodate shorter distance fun runners. The race now attracts fields in excess of 7 000 runners and one of the traditions created is the presentation of a special clock to all runners who have completed 20 Tough Ones. All we can say is that it is a very well-earned timepiece.