Wednesday, 5 September 2012

Gusii golden marathon series boosted by Safaricom

By Fred Maingi in Nairobi
Elias Makori
Athletics Kenya (AK) has been asked to use the Safaricom Gusii Golden
series as a selection event for the country’s team for the Chiba
The Gusii Golden Series founder and patron Elias Makori said the
timing ahead of the Chiba Ekiden and the course are favourable.
“The Gusii Golden Series take place by the first week of October with
the Chiba Ekiden taking place in November and further more the course
is tough and good enough in preparing our athletes,” he said.
Last year’s jackpot winner in the event was  form four student Edwin Mokua who
was selected in the Chiba Ekiden team where he posted the fastest
Onesmus Nyerere who won the inaugural event isa  member of the team
that set the Ekiden’s World record.
The series got a shot in the arm from regular sponsors Safaricom
Limited who donated Sh2 million towards the organisation of the tenth
edition of the event.
While receiving the cheque from Victoria Kaigai, Safaricom head of
Public Relations and Communication, Athletics Kenya Nyanza South
chairman Peter Angwenyi thanked the mobile phone service provider for
the continued support for the races, which has helped identify and
nurture athletes from the region.
The circuit opener will be on this Friday with the Okoa Jahazi Gucha
10km Road Race then the M-Pesa Kisii race on September 23 and the
grand finale at Kebirigo on October 7 wrapping the series.
The circuit winner will pocket Sh20,000 and a cow in Gucha and Kisii
with the Sh50,000 at stake for the victorious runner in Kebirigo and
also Sh50,000 for the athlete who wins the jackpot.
Over 1000 runners are expected to take part in the three legs in an
event that has seen the likes of Team Kenya men 10000m runner, Peter
Kirui, forge their name with registration fee pegged at Sh50 per
Reigning Boston marathon champion Caroline Cheptanui Kilel and Daegu
runners Mercy Cherono (5,000m), Peter Kirui (10,000m), Thomas
Longosiwa (5,000m), Caroline Rotich (marathon) and Paul Tanui
(10,000m) are all graduates from the Kebirigo race. Commonwealth Games
10,000m champion Grace Momanyi, Amsterdam and Milan Marathon winner
Solomon Busiendich are also among the top athletes who began their
road running careers in the race that is being sponsored by Safaricom
Limited for the seventh straight year.
Kaigai said: "As Safaricom, we have realised that athletics has
evolved from being a pastime into a source of livelihood for many
Kenyan youths, who are a great inspiration to the next generation."

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