Ngorongoro Half Marathon likely to be held in August

04Jun 2020
Marc Nkwame
Dar es Salaam
The Guardian
Ngorongoro Half Marathon likely to be held in August

THE annual Ngorongoro Half Marathon, which was briefly postponed due to the outbreak of the infectious Covid-19 in Tanzania, will now take place next August, according to the race's organizers.

A section of elite athletes take part in a past Ngorongoro Half Marathon, which took place in Arusha.

The Ngorongoro Half Marathon is an athletic event usually running in April and involves runners racing from Loduare entry gate in Ngorongoro Crater, down to Karatu and Rhotia townships then climaxing at Mazingira Bora grounds.

More than 2000 athletes were expected to race in the 2020 installment of the annual Ngorongoro Half Marathon which was to take place a week after Easter, attracting participants from Tanzania, Kenya and other countries.

Organized by Meta Sports and bankrolled by the Ngorongoro Conservation Area Authority (NCAA), the athletics event is annually flagged off from the Loduare gate at the NCAA, with the main race sticking to the usual half marathon distance of 21 kilometres.

The event also features 5 kilometres Fun Race as well as the children category topping at the 2.5 kilometres’ distance run.

Now the race coordinator, Meta Petro, revealed here that they intend to organize the race on August 2, 2020, over four months since the previously mentioned date of April 19.

Runners will race all the way to Rhotia Hills, then turn back and complete the race at the Mazingira Bora grounds of Karatu township.

It usually rains when the race is held in April, but for August, dust will prevail.

This year’s race theme, ‘Race Against Poaching, Promote Domestic Tourism,' also remains as it is expected that the race will highly promote tourism activities at the Ngorongoro Conservation Area as well as keeping the adjacent Karatu township busy.

Minister for Natural Resources and Tourism, Khamis Kigwangalla, participated in the Ngorongoro Half Marathon for two consecutive years, 2018 and 2019.

During the previous Ngorongoro Half Marathon, which was held last year, Kenyan runner, Abraham Too, emerged as the men's category champion, completing the race in one hour, five minutes and 59 seconds.

Michael Kishiba from the National Service (JKT), who covered the distance in one hour, five minutes and 45 seconds, was second and the only Tanzanian in the top-three positions in the category.

He was ahead of the third-placed runner, Festus Cheboi, who also hails from Kenya.

The same case applied to the race's women category, which had Esther Chesang from Kenya topping the lot having raced the 21 kilometers in one hour, 16 minutes and 49 seconds.

She beat Tanzanian, Natalie Elisante from Talent Club of Arusha, who completed the half marathon in one hour, 16 minutes and 41 seconds.

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