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11 countries compete for Okpekpe Road Race laurels

Organisers of Okpekpe International Road Race have confirmed that athletes from eleven countries would compete in the 10 kilometer road race slated for May 13,…

Organisers of Okpekpe International Road Race have confirmed that athletes from eleven countries would compete in the 10 kilometer road race slated for May 13, this year.

Chairman, Pamodzi Sporting Marketing, Mr Mike Itemuagbor, who disclosed this yesterday during a briefing to create awareness for the event, listed the countries from where athletes would participate in the race as Ethiopia, Kenya, Turkey Morocco, Germany, Uganda, Eritrea, Tanzania, Burundi, Bahrain and Nigeria.

Itemuagbor added that Okpekpe race being one of the three bronze label races in Africa, only label athletes all over the world have been invited to compete in road race.

He said this year’s edition of the race has been improved upon with the introduction of electronic devices to check cheating by some athletes who hide inside the bush only to join the race towards the end to claim victory.

“Bib tap timing system would be used by all athletes and once an athlete crosses the red map at the starting point, the runner would be captured. We also have a doping centre where athletes would be tested. This is done to eliminate cheating of athletes and make sure that genuine athletes compete in the race,” he said.

“To ensure success of the race accreditation and registration of athletes would commence on May 11 and end on May 12. We have also banned the use of motorcycles within the starting point because some athletes use it to cheat in previous editions and whoever flaunts the ban would be arrested,” Itemuagbor added. 

He called on Nigerian athletes to take advantage of the Okpekpe race to run a label race which he said would certified them to run any label race in any party of the world.

Also speaking, the state Deputy Governor, Philip Shaibu, said he would also compete in the race to raise money for cancer patients.

“I am running for cancer, I am running so that cancer will be relegated. And for those who are already having it, I am running to raise money for them,” he said.

 

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