Speaking during the launch on Wednesday, the founder Major (Rtd) Marsden Madoka noted that the event had put athletics development in the Taita region on the country’s map.
“The idea of the marathon was to tap talent in the area because the altitude there is 6000ft above sea level and we needed to encourage the youth to take up the sport,” he said of the event where the winners of the men and women 21km main races will pocket Sh100,000 each.
At the same function, Athletics Kenya (AK) chairman Isaiah Kiplagat cautioned politicians intent on organising road races to gain political mileage that the federation would not permit them.
“We want events that can discover talent not politicians who come in almost every other day requesting to organise races when elections are near. We will not let AK to be used to help them to get votes,” he charged.
On the Madoka race, the chair noted, “Although it was meant for Taita region, we are pleased to see athletes from Eldoret, Kisumu, Nanyuki and Nakuru coming to participate and it is not an easy job for one to win.”
Double world marathon champion, Abel Kirui as well as Africa Cross Country senior men titleholder, Boniface Manage are among established runners who developed their skills at the Madoka race.
Seasoned athletes and newcomers are among those expected in the deep field.
– Gloria Kendi