Kenya and Ethiopia runners, yesterday, dominated the eighth edition of the Access Bank Lagos City Marathon held in Lagos.
Kenya’s Edwin Kibet Koech won the race in a time of 02:14:14 ahead of Ethiopia’s Dekeba Tarfa, who finished second in 02:14:54, while Kenya’s Bernard Sang settled for the bronze medal 02:17:14.
Koech took the lead from Obalende Bridge and maintained it to the end despite the pressure from the Ethiopian runner.
For his effort, Koech received $50,000, while Tarfa and Sang got $40,000 and $30,000 respectively.
In the women’s elite race, Alemenesh Guta of Ethiopia won the top prize. Kebene Urisa also of Ethiopia finished second, while Kenya’s Naomi Maiyo took the third position.
Speaking with journalists after the race, Kibet expressed delight in winning the contest, saying this edition was very competitive.
“It was a very competitive race and I am excited to have won it. It was not my best performance; my personal best was achieved in Europe. But like I said, I’m happy to win.
“I hope to be here next year, if invited. I’ll take three months rest and will resume training thereafter,” he said.
No elite athlete was able to achieve the 2 hours 10 minutes benchmark set by the organisers, Nilayo Sports Management, to win the additional $10,000, yesterday.
For the local marathoners, Gyang Boyi Nyango, coasted home in a time of 2:27:15, and was followed by Adamu Muazu, who crossed the finish line in a time of 2:30:52. Friday Yohana took the bronze medal and went home with N1million.
Gyang went home with N3 million for his first position, while, second placed Muazu got N2 million.
In the women’s race for the local runners, Deborah Pam showed why she is still the best Nigerian female marathoner, as she finished first in a time of 2:48:33, Elizabeth Nuhu and Dimatu Yohana finished second and third position respectively.
Meanwhile, the General Manager of the Access Bank Lagos City Marathon, Yusuf Alli, a former African champion in long jump, said organisers would continue to push for the Platinum Label status.