NAIROBI, Kenya, May 7 -Four-time Boston and New York Marathon Champion Bill Rodgers will not be at this year’s Sotokoto Safari Half Marathon to indisposition.
Rodgers who was supposed to be the chief guest at the race is battling cancer and will miss out on the event because of the toll the long trip will take on his body.
“I want to thank you for inviting me for Sotokoto Marathon but because I’m fighting cancer, I’m very weary of such a long trip. I want to salute you for building this new marathon in Kenya for runners from all over the world”, Rodgers told organizers in a message.
Rodgers won Boston and New York Marathon four times each between 1975 and 1980 and had been lined up as the main overseas guest.
Meanwhile, with a fortnight to go, 600 runners have so far entered the marathon as Equity Bank came on board as the main registration centre.
Announcing the latest developments for the May 23rd event, Technical Director, Robert Ouko disclosed runners and corporate teams could now register at any Equity Branch countrywide for the second edition of the event.
Registration fee of Kshs. 1000/= for adults and Kshs. 500/= for children should be paid to the Bank through account number 018293856708 upon filling a registration form on designated counters.
Other registration centres include the event’s secretariat at Kenya Wildlife Service headquarters, Athletics Kenya’s Riadha House, various training camps including Ngong and Iten as well as selected supermarkets and service stations with displayed posters. Registration closes on May 15th with the final deadline where a penalty will be charged on May 18th.
In another development, the lead car to be driven by retired Japanese Motorsport ace, Kenjiro Shinozuka of the Paris-Dakar Rally fame arrived at the port of Mombasa this week.
“It will arrive in Nairobi upon customs clearance and we shall then display it close to the venue. It is a unique innovation of the automotive industry that will be making its first appearance in Africa”, Sotokoto CEO, Douglas Wakiihuri said of the prototype developed by the Japanese University Student that has toured Australia and US among others.
The new route has finally been approved with the removal of the Southlands Estate section due to traffic logistics. The new route will entirely concentrate on Langata Road whereby athletes will make the loop twice.