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Marathon runners head to Selebi-Phikwe

CALISTUS KOLANTSHO
Marathon runners will target the mouthwatering P25,000 cash prize
Marathon runners will breathe new life into a stuttering Selebi-Phikwe as the annual Orange Phikwe National Marathon takes place on Saturday. The marathon kicks-off with a gruelling 42.2km race followed by 15km, 10km and the 4km fun run.

The starting and finishing point is the Selebi-Phikwe Town Council Stadium. The men’s defending champion is Nkosiyazi Sibanda who finished last year’s race in a time of 2:20:41.

Godiraone Nthomphe (2:20:52) finished second followed by Kabo Jenamo who clocked 2:21:03. Onneile Dintwe is the women’s defending champion, after clocking 2:51:48. Tabitha Tsatsa was hot on her heels and completed the race in a time of 2:52:34. Samukeliso Moyo came third registering a time of 2:55:03.

Orange public relations officer, Carol Kgafela told Mmegi Sport yesterday that everything was in place. “So far we have registered 750 runners but we are expecting late registrations, which means that number is likely to increase,” she said. Kgafela said the groundwork has been finalised, which include road markings and setting up of water points. She said marshals have been trained and they would be able to assist the runners on the day.

Kgafela said the route has not changed from the previous edition and has been shared on social media platforms. Botswana Athletics Association (BAA) spokesperson, Ipolokeng Ramatshaba said, as has become the norm, they have accredited the marathon. “It is a national

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marathon and it should be taken seriously. Runners must know that we would be watching them because next year we are hosting the All Africa Games, they should work hard in order to be selected,” he said.

Ramatshaba said most local runners, especially men, are not able to win the Phikwe marathon due to fatigue. He said when the marathon is held, they have already competed in numerous other races. He said ideally, an athlete should compete in three marathons in a year. Ramatshaba said the challenge is that marathons are used as a way of generatingincome. “Most of our long distance runners are unemployed.

The little they get from the marathons goes a long way in assisting them,” Ramatshaba said. The winner of the Phikwe marathon pockets P25, 000, the second prize is P15, 000 while the third placed runner receives P10, 000. The 15km race will see the winner pocket P7, 500 with P5, 000 going to the first runner-up and P3, 500 for third position. The prize for 10km is P5, 000, second position gets P3, 000 and P2, 500 for finishing third.



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