Sport

Abeokuta Marathon Race Will Be Better Than Okpekpe Standard – Olopade

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R-L: Mr. Femi Osobajo, Senior Marketing Manager, Bet9ja, CEO Nilayo Sports Management Ltd., Mr. Bukola Olopade, Reps. Elizade Autoland, Mr. Demola Philips
The organizer of the 2019 JAC Motors Abeokuta 10KM Race, Nilayo Sports Management Limited has assured participants at the Abeokuta marathon race of a better competition than Okpekpe race.
The Chairman, Nilayo Sports Management, Mr. Bukola Olopade gave the assurance on Thursday at a press conference held in Abeokuta, Ogun State chapter to herald the commencement of the maiden edition of JAC Motors Abeokuta 10KM race.
Olopade noted that, about over 3,000 participants have already signified interest to participate in the race endorsed by World Athletics Governing body, IAAF.
He explained that, the 10 kilometre road race starting from Iyana-Oloke in Onikolobo, Abeokuta will pass through some iconic areas and ending at the palace of Alake of Egbaland in Ake will also feature participants from about 18 countries.
The former Ogun sports commissioner added that, it was the first time in the world, the International Association Athletics Federation, IAAF would licensed a race before it was held, adding that races are always licensed after it must have been held.
He maintained that, no age limit for participants, as interested athlete with the age bracket of 15 and above can participate, saying the race will kick off at 6am on November 3rd.
The organizer therefore announced that, the eventual winner will go home with $5000USD, first runner up will get $3000USD while the second runner up will get $1000USD.
Additional cash of N2million for first Nigerian athlete who cross the line within the bracket time, while the first athlete with special needs will get N500, 000 only.
“We decided to come to Abeokuta because of the interest of all Egba monarchs in sports who prevailed on us to replicate what we have achieved in Lagos to change the lifestyle and project the tourism of the state.
“IAAF felt the best 10km stretch in Nigeria is Abeokuta township roads and that is we are here being the first of its kind. We can recreate a sensational race better than Okpekpe race in Edo.
“The marathon will go through some iconic towns in Abeokuta like Onikolobo, Panseke, Omida, Isale -Igbein, Sapon, Ake, Itoko and Saje. Our target for the foreign runners is 30 but we have received over 100 entries from almost 18 countries.
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“The purpose of the race is not about wellness of the athletes, but for government to see sports as economic contributor to the internally generated revenue of the state. It will also propel the government to construct more roads, hospitals and bring development and capacity building of the citizens.”
Meanwhile, about three sky camera and 21 referees will cover the race across the designated routes.

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