Cross River State Governor, Senator Liyel Imoke, will flag-off the 8th edition of the Obudu international mountain race Saturday at the Obudu Ranch Resort in Obudu, Cross River State.
Imoke, according to the Chairman of the Local Organising Committee (LOC) for the race, William Archibong, has accepted to once again flag off this year's race which will witness the staging of the fourth edition of the African Nations Mountain Running Championships for both men and women.
"The governor will flag off tomorrow's race at the mountain resort in Obudu. He will be assisted by Bruno Gozzelino, the President of the World Mountain Running Association and Chief Solomon Ogba, President of the Athletic Federation of Nigeria," Archibong disclosed.
Meanwhile, the LOC has revealed an unchanged prize money outlay for this year's edition. Two years ago, the total prize money for the 6th edition of the race was increased by over $35,000 by the organisers following the introduction of the women's version of the African Nations Mountain Running Championship.
The total prize money which had gone up from $245,500 to $278,000 has been retained for this year's edition. The prize money for the first to the 10th position for this year's race remains the same with the winners in each gender category going home with $50,000 each, while $20,000 and $9,000 respectively will go to the second and third-placed finishers.
The prizes for 4th -10th-placed finishers in each category also remain at $4,500, $4,000, $3,000, $2,500, $2,000, $1,500 and $1,000 respectively.
Archibong explaining the reason for the retention of last year's prize money structure for the 7th edition said: 'The governor wants the race to maintain its status as the highest paying mountain race in the world. He is happy with the way the competition has being organised since its maiden edition in 2005 and wanted us to make this year's event even bigger and better in terms of the technical organisation of the race as well as the quality of athletes who will participate."
The African Championship draws a prize money of $15,000 for first team position, $10,000 for second and $7,500 for third team position for both men and women.
The prize monies for best Nigerian finishers (men/women) and Media Race (men/women) are also unchanged with the top three finishers going home with $2,000, $1,500 and $1,000 respectively.
Also, the prize monies for the children's race where a total of N590,000 will be shared among the top 10 finishers with the top three in the boys and girls categories carting home N100,000, N80,000 and N50,000 respectively.
Fourth to 10th-placed finishers will get N20,000, N10,000, N9,000, N8,000, N7,000, N6,000 and N5,000 respectively.