The list of world-class marathoners that will compete for medals and cash prizes at the February 10, 2018 Access Bank Lagos City Marathon keeps growing by the day.
Kenyan Georgina Rono and Ethiopian Azalech Masresha are the latest to join the class of elite female runners.
Rono, winner of the Eindhoven Marathon and other elite marathons has a personal best of 2:24:33 hours.
Third at the 2012 Boston Marathon, she also has a half marathon best of 1. 07:58.
Her husband, Daniel Koech, also a marathoner was one of the three pacers at the 2017 Access Bank Lagos City Marathon.
Masresha from Ethiopia has a personal best of 1:09:46 in the half marathon and 2:25:34 in the full marathon.
Masresha who has moved to a warmer weather to be able to compete for the top prize in Lagos said:
“I am happy that the 2018 race will start by 6.30am this will give us the opportunity to finish before the weather becomes too hot but irrespective of the organizers moving the race to 6.30am, I have moved my training to a city that has the same weather with Lagos. That way, the timing will be irrelevant since am already used to the Lagos weather.’’
General Manager Access Bank Lagos City Marathon, Yusuf Alli, said the number of elite that would participate in the 2018 edition may double that of the two previous editions.
“In 2016 and 2017, we had over 200 elite runners but the level of interest being shown in the 2018 edition, we may get double that figure. Elite athletes are writing from America, Mexico, Germany and so many parts of the world’’.
Alli attributes this to the organizers’ prompt payment of prize money, good organization and the good people of Lagos.
“Our getting an (IAAF) label after two editions is also one of the factors that is making our race generate intense positive interest worldwide,” Alli added. – VON.