The Ethiopian duo of Ulfata Gelata and Dagne Siranesh Yirga, on Saturday, February 12, emerged as the male and female winners of the 7th edition of the Access Bank Lagos City Marathon.
Geleta, who finished as the first runner-up at last year’s edition upped his run this time to claim the price of $30, 000 after running the 42 km race in 2 hours, 11 minutes and 54 seconds.
Though the Ethiopian’s winning time fell short of the course record set at the 2020 edition of the annual race, it is the second-fastest ever in the history of the globally-acclaimed 42km road race.
Unlike previous years where the Kenyans were the pacesetters, the duo of David Barmasai and Emmanuel Naibei from the Eastern African country could only settle for second and third places respectively.
Barmasai and Naibei went home with $20,000 and $15,000, respectively for their efforts at this year’s race.
In the women’s category, Ethiopia’s Dagne Siranesh Yirga was the first athlete to cross the finish line at two hours 33 minutes and 50 seconds.
She was followed in second place by compatriot Alemenseh Guta and Kenya’s Naomi Maiyo in third place.
This is the second time that an Ethpionan will win both the male and female categories of the Access Bank Lagos City Marathon.
In the Nigeria category, Shehu Muazu and Fadekemi Olukemi were the top finishers who won the N1 million prize monies set aside for the indigenous athletes
According to the organisers, over 30,000 participants took part in Saturday’s race.
The Governor of Lagos State, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, Edo State Deputy Governor Philip Shaibu, former NBA star Olumide Oyedeji, among others, were part of Saturday’s exciting race, which was laced with some form of entertainment with performances from Teniola and Zlatan Ibile.
The Athletics Federation of Nigeria President, Tonobok Okowa, lauded the giant strides the marathon has made since its inception seven years ago.
He said: “I want to give kudos to Access Bank and the other sponsors for the good work they are doing to sustain the marathon.
After just two editions, the marathon was given a bronze label so we should appreciate them for this”.
On his part, the Lagos State Sports Commission Chairman Sola Aiyepeku reiterated the support of the Lagos State Government:
“It’s a privilege for me to have been a part of the Access Bank Marathon from the planning stage, down to implementation, and here we are at the seventh edition.
“I want to say well done to Nilayo and thank you to our sponsors.
Your patience and incremental investment have not gone unnoticed.
The strides being made by the marathon is a total buy-in for Lagos State, and we will do everything to ensure it continues,” he added.
The next edition of the Lagos Marathon is scheduled for February 4, 2023.
Ethiopian duo wins 2022 Lagos city Marathon