Eldoret City marathon put off due to coronavirus pandemic

Wednesday, April 8th, 2020 00:00 |
Valary Aiyabei cuts the tape to win the second Edition of Eldoret City Marathon last year. This year’s race has been cancelled due to Covid-19. Photo/PD/EMMANUEL MASINDE

Timothy Simwa

Eldoret City Marathon is the latest sporting event in the country to fall victim to the coronavirus pandemic after it was postponed indefinitely yesterday. 

The organising committee led by race director Moses Tanui said it had come to the decision after wide consultations with stakeholders in athletics in the wake of Covid-19 and deemed it wise to have the third edition that was slated for April 19, called off until further notice.

“We continue to monitor the situation in the country but for now it is imperative for us to have the event cancelled in the meantime as the country and the entire world battles this pandemic that is eating our sports life,” said Tanui.

Tanui further noted that it was important to have everybody on board to help the country deal with Covid-19 as he appealed to the athletics fraternity to take a leading role in the fight even as he expressed optimism that the situation would  normalise soon.

He, however, noted that most of the athletes are currently battling difficult financial times amid the outbreak with most of the camps in the larger North Region currently closed to avert the spread of the disease.

“Many of the athletes are sponsored through various camps but things have since changed and I hope the government through the Ministry of Sports can find away to alleviate their suffering at the moment. They have been our good ambassadors,” added Tanui.

Athletics Kenya Central Rift chairperson Abraham Mutai encouraged athletes to continue registering for the event that had targeted to bring on board over 500 local and international athletes.

“We have seen London and Boston marathons being called off and in the spirit of the government to fight this plague and for the safety of our athletes we have equally considered postponing our race till further notice,” said Mutai.

Eldoret City marathon prides itself as the most lucrative race on the continent with winners in both men and women categories carrying home Sh3.5 million each. 

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