Final registration of athletes for Saturdayâ€™s sixth IAAF silver label Okpekpe International 10km Road Race begins today in Auchi in Edo State.
The registration, according to the race’s Director of Organisation, Zack Amodu, entails screening and accreditation of all athletes who have completed the registration format on any of the platforms provided by the organisers.
â€œThe accreditation of athletes and officials will commence on Thursday (today) at the Yak Hotel Auchi and it will end midday on Friday. All registered athletes will be screened and accredited for the historic race which will be live on television from seven in the morning with the actual race scheduled to start at 8am.â€
According to Amodu, the athletes will be provided with their bib numbers as a sign of accreditation for the race and the registration and accreditation point is Yak Hotel which is located along Auchi-Benin Road in Auchi.
Amodu also disclosed that all the invited foreign elite athletes will jet in today and they include 2016 winners Simon Cheprot of Kenya and Pauline Nwajiku who won the men and women’s race respectively in 2016.
â€œWe are also expecting Diana Kipyogei of Kenya who won the Adana Half Marathon in Turkey in January and the Guadalajara Half Marathon in February. Early last month she placed 3rd in the Istanbul Half Marathon, running a new 1:07:55 personal best.
â€œWe also expect Ethiopia’s Jima Bekele Reta to arrive Lagos this afternoon. Reta holds the unofficial second fastest time over the distance in history.â€
Also set to jet in is Sandrafelis Chebet Tuei of Kenya, the fastest woman over the women’s 10km so far this year.
â€œWe are expecting a very explosive race and a new course record for both the men and women race as we have a very quality elite field,â€ said Amodu.
Meanwhile all eyes are now focused on the Okpekpe race as the 46th IAAF label road race to be held this year following the staging of the IAAF Gold Label Volkswagen Prague Marathon in Praha, Czech Republic last Sunday.
Saturday’s Okpekpe race is the only IAAF silver label 10km road race for the first half of 2018 and will be live on Satellite (SuperSport) and terrestrial; Africa Independent Television television (AIT).
It is organised by Pamodzi Sports Marketing, leaders in sports marketing and hospitality business in Nigeria. It is the first and only road race in Nigeria that has been granted full membership of Association of International Marathons and Distance Races (AIMS) and recognised as one of the prestigious road races in the world and the only race with an IAAF silver label status in West Africa.