The interest shown in the Access Bank Lagos City Marathon is growing with each edition and this is evident in the number of top runners from across the world seeking participation in the one-day event, the organisers have said.
For the forthcoming edition slated for February 10, the General Manager for the Access Bank Lagos City Marathon, Yusuf Alli, said that over 100 top runners from various parts of the world are expected to compete in Lagos.
“Across the world, we should have a minimum of 100 top-class runners even though we originally pencilled down 84,” Alli said at the weekend.
He said entries from both home and abroad have been overwhelming especially in the newly-introduced 10km Family Race.
Despite the huge interest coming from runners across the world, Alli was unequivocal that it is not a free for all as only the best and those capable of adding value will be officially invited.
He said, “We have raised our game and we are only bringing the best from all over the world. The first criterion we have set is that any athlete that would be invited or given any form of appearance fee should be doing below 2:10mins.”
Alli however assured participants that any elite from any part of the world was still welcomed to feel the vibe of the Lagos Marathon.
“We have people coming from as far as Finland, France and other parts of the world; we expect a spectacular race this year,” the former African record holder in long jump said.
Alli also expressed optimism that Nigerian athletes should be able to give their counterparts from across the world a run for their money especially with the improved incentives by the organisers.
“I am aware our home-grown athletes have been training well, we expect them to improve on what that they did in the first two editions. As for the runners, we have increased their prize monies, so we hope that will spur them to better performance.”