Kili Marathon proud of Simbu feat

30Aug 2016
The Guardian Reporter
The Guardian
Kili Marathon proud of Simbu feat

THE Kilimanjaro Marathon team has congratulated athlete Alfonce Simbu for his brilliant performance at the just-ended Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, where he finished 5th in the full marathon when he rubbed shoulders with the best in the world.

This comes in the wake of Simbu having taken part in the annual edition of 2014 Kilimanjaro Marathon where he finished fourth in half of the event.

“This greatly motivated me to start training hard for the Olympic Games and managed to finish fifth out of over 150 runners. I believe Kili Marathon can produce many champions if well utilised,” said Simbu.

“Tanzanian athletes taking part in the marathon should be empowered and monitored afterwards to prepare them for other international races ahead of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics,” he noted, adding that the race in Moshi has become one of the prominent in the world and should be taken seriously by athletes and the government.

“I hereby call upon other athletes to start with our own marathon in Moshi which will help them in improving their personal best times and at the moment we have one of the best training camps in West Kilimanjaro where even other elite runners from neighbouring Kenya can comfortably train as the weather and terrain there are perfect,” he said.

The Kilimanjaro beer brand manager, Pamela Kikuli said Simbu has raised the status of the annual event held in Moshi as it is clear that it is a race of champions. Tanzania Breweries Ltd is main sponsor of the annual athletic event in Moshi.

“We congratulate him for his achievement as this is an honour to our country and also our marathon, which he took part in and later went to the Olympics, we believe more athletes will be encouraged to participate as it now attracts close to 10,000 athletes.

John Addison, one of the organisers of the annual Moshi races in collaboration with Deep Blue Media, said Simbu has made the event even more famous through his participation and later on giving Tanzania the best result in decades.

“We are certain that the races will continue producing champions and sooner or later Tanzania will walk out of the Olympics with medals, our athletes should also try out the Victoria Falls Marathon which can also give them more challenge and help them improve further,” he said.

There are many Simbu’s out there all we need is good preparations for the athletes, they must engage in vigorous training all through the year to ensure they improve on their personal bests”, said Aggrey Marealle who coordinates the Moshi annual races.

Mareale congratulated Athletics Tanzania and urged the government to intensify support for athletics and ensure the momentum is carried through up to Tokyo 2020. Marealle also praised the media for publicising the event.