…says he has already registered
…Race to gulp N300 million
By Ibrahim HassanWuyo
Governor Nasiru Ahmad El-Rufa’i of Kaduna state has said that he had already registered to participate in the forthcoming Kaduna International Marathon and would not do more than 5km.
He spoke in Kaduna on Saturday, saying
the maiden Kaduna International Marathon 2020 scheduled for November 21, 2020 is expected to gulp N300 million with 10 elite athletes expected from across the world..
According to him, the 21km half marathon race, with the theme: Let’s Run Together’, was aimed at talent hunting, engaging the youth and attracting investment opportunities to the state.
He said, there would be prize money ranging from $10,000 for the winner to $1,000 for the 10th position in the male and female elite category and N3 million for the first placed Nigerian male and female ranging to N250,000 for the 10th placed runner in that category.
“The inaugural edition of Kaduna International Marathon race will take place on Saturday 24 November, 2020 as half marathon. Kaduna Runs is designed as an annual sporting event of economic benefit to all. We hope it would help Kaduna state as an investment hub and spotting talent.
“Kaduna Runs is fully funded by sponsors and participants who registered to run. Kaduna runs is designed as a family and all inclusive affairs, it is 13 miles so it is less strenuous than full marathon. Registered runners can drop off at any point, as participants can run 5km, 10km. I have already registered and I would not do more than 5km.
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“We intend to raise the prize money and in 2021, we intent to put a line budget and double the prize money. It would be sustained until 2023 when we would leave office. Sports is a source of health and livelihood, a way of getting youths engaged and a business that can export footballers, athletes, basketballers. We want to revive Kaduna clay court tennis tournament, make Kaduna annual governors tournament to be an international golf event.”
Chairman of the organising committee, Mr Jimi Lawal said though there are lots of costs to cover, “we have few companies committed to be title sponsor, platinum, gold, silver and bronze sponsors. We are looking at between N250 and N300 million as cost of the Kaduna Marathon race. We are sure of attracting enough sponsors to cover the costs. If we can attract the sponsors, it shows that the competition is sustainable.”
The Consultant to the Kaduna Marathon race, Mr Bukola Olopade said Kaduna state used to be known as provider of sports talents but now “Kaduna state has grown from provider of sports talents to providing the infrastructure to develop the talents. We want to bring everybody together to participate the young, the old, the villagers, the city people, especially the women”.
The Kaduna state Commissioner for Sports Development, Prof. Kabiru Mato said Kaduna International Marathon is part of the foundation to bringing the state back to its past glory as provider of sporting talents.
“Kaduna shall revert back to its old former self of sports production and reproduction. No city has produced more national team stars. In the next few years, we would lay solid foundation to make Kaduna greater in sports which is the rationale behind the Kaduna Marathon race,” he said.