Mwanza — MWANZA'S Copro Mwita and Mary Naaly from Arusha respectively won 21km race during this year's edition of the Rock City Marathon staged in Mwanza.
Mwita clocked 1:04:02 to outsmart over 375 rivals while Marry timed 1:16:33 to claim the women's title, beating 122 other runners. Dotto Ikangara from Arusha shone in the men's five-kilometre race, finishing ahead of John Joseph from Singida and Ukerewe's Paul Elias who grabbed third place.
The race which started in 2009 has been organized by Capital-Plus International (CPI) and sponsored by, among others National Social Security Fund (NSSF), Airtel Tanzania, Geita Gold Mine, Air Tanzania Company Limited, and Parastatal Pensions Fund (PPF) . The race attracted more than 2015 participants who ran their breath out in order to clinch top places which this year came with improved rewords compared to previous years.
The President of Athletics Tanzania (AT), Anthony Mtaka, who was the guest of honour yesterday, hailed the race's organizers, saying the event has succeeded in tapping and grooming young athletes. "This year's Rock City Marathon has clearly shown us that there are many untapped talents among our youths in athletics.
It is now time that Private companies and even the Government should pump funds in such areas by sponsoring able organizers to help these youths to shape their talents," he said. He noted that Rock City Marathon has proved to be a force to reckon by managing to handle all categories including elderly, disabled, children and half marathon and five kilometre for all.
The recently appointed Mvomero District Commissioner in Morogoro used the occasion to warn people against invading sports grounds. On his part, the AT Secretary General Suleiman Nyambui said that Rock City Marathon has proved to be a big success year on year.
"I am very proud of this event and the future is very bright", Nyambui, former Olympic medalist said. Runners from different regions across the country as well as from foreign countries like India, Canada, Australia, South Africa, Rwanda, Kenya and Uganda took part.
Apart from medals handed to winners, cash prizes were also given whereby the 21-kilometre winners took home 1.2m/- each while the runners up were given 900,000/- each. Second runners-up in both categories pocketed in 700,000/-each while for the fourth up to 10th winners was awarded 150,000/- each, while those who were in position 11th to 25th were awarded 100,000/- each in both women and men categories.
Winners in the 5km category walked away with medals and 50,000/- for the first position on both men and women categories each, second position 30,000/- each, third position 20,000/- and fourth to 25th position pocketed 15,000/- each.
Jeremiah Kinshuzi won the 3km race for elderly category and Pascal Emanuel was first in the category of people with special needs category. They got 50,000/- each, while first runner-up received 30,000/-, second runner-up 20,000/- and those finished between the fourth and 25th position received 15,000/- apiece.