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Safaricom Kenya Splashed 18Mil Ksh to 20 Kenyan Marathon Runners!

Founded by retired athlete Moses Tanui, who was a two-time Boston Marathon champion, the Eldoret City Marathon serves as a local bridge to international opportunities. Safaricom 18 million Marathon

Needy yet talented athletes get an opportunity to transform their lives economically and also get proof of being athletes.

With a purse of KES 18 million, shared among the first 20 runners in the 42-kilometre men’s and women’s race, the Eldoret City Marathon is among the most lucrative races in Africa.

“I am now a landlord” are the simple yet powerful words of Victor Kipchirchir, a three-time winner of the Eldoret City Marathon. His wins in 2021 and 2022 earned him KES 7 million and set him on his way to the coveted position of earning rental income.

“What motivates me to perform well at the Eldoret City Marathon is that I am at home. I was born here in Uasin Gishu county, so I aim to run well in front of my family and friends,” said Kipchirchir moments after winning the 2024 edition of the race and pocketing yet another cheque for KES 3.5 million.

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Having transformed his life through athletics, founder Tanui explains why he seeks to enable the many athletes who daily pound the dirt tracks in Kenya’s Rift, armed with just a dream, to get a chance at global stardom.

“Usually, we don’t have the elite athletes per se. At Eldoret City Marathon, we would like to give mid-level athletes a chance to get a manager, an agent and a shoe deal. The Eldoret City Marathon is held here because this is the home of champions, 99% of Kenyan athletes are here in this town. But the sad news is that these athletes may train for their entire life but if they don’t get a chance like this marathon, they will not excel anywhere. Because they cannot travel to races that are recognised.” He said.

Moved by the plight of upcoming athletes, who at times lack shoes, training kits, shelter and proper nutrition, the Gladys Boss Foundation is championing the Adopt-an-athlete concept. By contributing via a pay-bill, well-wishers can fund the basic needs of needy athletes and get rewarded by the knowledge of having supported the next Eliud Kipchoge.

Kenya’s global athletic prowess and success has for long been said to hinge on her athletes training at high altitude and “climate action” is a key plank of the Eldoret City Marathon. The race organisers have partnered with the Kenya Forest Service who have allocated them 30 hectares (75 acres) in Napkoi Forest Station in Uasin Gishu. The plan is to plant indigenous trees as a way to conserve the environment and fight the effects of climate change.

The 2024 edition of the Eldoret City Marathon that had support from both the national and the Uasin Gishu county government also enjoyed a sponsorship of KES 4.3 million from Safaricom.

During the 2024 race, marathon winners Victor Kipchirchir and Emily Chepkoech each pocketed KES 3.5 million. For finishing second, Felix Kipsang and Martha Akeno, each took home KES 1.5 million. Third-placed Evans Kipruto and Joan Kipkosgei, each bagged KES 1 million. Safaricom 18 million Marathon

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