Nairobi, Kenya 31 July – The tenth edition of the annual UAP Ndakaini Marathon is expected to be a star studded event as renowned athletes take the track to mark its special anniversary. Among the leading lights are former world champions are gold medalist Douglas Wakiihuri, world marathon record holder Patrick Makau and pace maker Peter Kirui, Abel brother.
Others are Golden League jackpot winner Pamela Jelimo, Dubai Marathon Champion Lucy Kabuu and steeplechase Africa record holder Milcah Chemos.
Other former stars include previous world half marathon champion, Paul Koech, Daniel Komen, Matthew Birir, William Tanui, Limo Benjamin, and Johnah Birir.
UAP Ndakaini Half Marathon ambassador and 2012 Olympic Silver Medalist Abel Kirui also confirmed he will participate. The athletes’ inclusion is in support of the marathon cause and fundraising in a unique concept dubbed ‘Ten for Ten’ where interested corporate teams will sponsor any one athlete at Ksh 500,000 to run as a member of their group at the half marathon.
UAP Insurance who are title sponsors of the half marathon have set this year’s event for Saturday September 14th with the headline 21 kilometer event around the scenic Ndakaini dam which located about 70 kilometers from Nairobi in Muranga County. Other races lined up are the 10 kilometer corporate and 5 kilometer fun one respectively. Corporate teams of 10 runners each will be required to pay Ksh 50,000 each.
The firm’s Head of Marketing and Distribution Joseph Kamiri announced that registration for the half marathon had kicked off and listed the registration centers as all UAP offices across the country, selected Uchumi Supermarkets outlets including Aga Khan Walk, Langata, Sarit, Westlands, Buru Buru, Ngong Road, Capital Centre, Taj Mall and Rongai.
Parklands Sports Club and Innscor outlets in Westlands Oilibya, Thika Road Mall and Langata Kobil will also have registration points. The individual registration fee is pegged at Ksh 500 for which the entrant will receive a t- shirt and a running number for the choice race. Registration will close on September 7th to allow for one week of compiling the entries.
He explained that the inclusion of the athletic champions was in line with the tenth anniversary of the half marathon as a tribute to its rising status as a training ground for emerging world -beaters. “Our marathon ambassador Abel Kirui and Lucy Kabuu who has won in Ndakaini in the past are examples of athletic talent that the half marathon has helped nurture,” said Kamiri.
He added that the event had grown from its inception where the first run attracted 300 athletes compared to last year when more than 2,500 runners participated. In addition, the prize money had grown to match the Athletics Kenya guidelines with the winners this year expected to take home Ksh 150,000 each.
Now in its tenth year, the UAP Ndakaini Half Marathon has over the years served to highlight the state of the Ndakaini dam and the environment around it as a key catchment and water source. And with the way it nestles in the bosom of the hills surrounding it, the dam presents an ideal tourist attraction and family getaway.
Working in close partnership with the community based organization Ndakaini Environmental Conservation Association (NDEKA), UAP Insurance pursues a sustainability program aimed at planting indigenous trees in the catchment region serving the Ndakaini dam. So far the company has planted 80,000 trees of the targeted 250,000.