A look back as Lagos City Marathon reach seventh edition

A look back as Lagos City Marathon reach seventh edition

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After restriction due to the covid-19 pandemic at the sixth edition with only 300 runners, five journalists and 60 VIPS in attendance, The Access Bank Lagos City Marathon returns on February 12 for its 7th running with fanfare.

 

For many Lagosian and Nigerians at large, the race serves as a collective optimism for the most populated black race in Africa as February 12 will be the largest gathering of people in the city since the Covid-19 pandemic as it brings a sense of renewal and confidence that the pandemic may be behind us.

 

At the third edition, the organizers of the race introduced a 10km family fun race to help Nigerian families exercise, keep fit and have fun with an opportunity to win massive prizes.

 

 

In an effort to ensure that the lost culture of distance race is revived in the country, the fun race was restricted to only to fun seekers with a prize for their effort.

 

The race General Manager, Yussuf Ali says to the delight of fun runners during a world press conference that the seventh edition will also include the 10km race.

General Manager, Access Bank Lagos City Marathon . Yussuf Ali

General Manager, Access Bank Lagos City Marathon . Yussuf Ali

 

“I also want to use this medium to assure our numerous runners especially the 10km fun runners who came to our office or contacted us on phone, emails and via our website that on February 12, 2022, we will have a full race and that it will include the 10km race. I appeal to intending runners to step up their training”.

 

Since the first edition of the Access Bank Lagos City Marathon in 2016, the annual event has set an unprecedented records in the history of long distance race in Africa and beyond, before the advent of the race, the culture of long distance race in Nigeria has long be forgotten.

 

Now it is not uncommon to see fun runners across the city of Lagos doing the 10KM and 21KM to keep fit.

 

It is noteworthy to commend the organizers for the numerous records set by the race as it becomes the first marathon race in Nigeria to reach its seventh edition.

 

On February 12, the Access Bank Lagos City Marathon will be the first Marathon in Nigeria to organize the 7th Edition, not surprising, at the end of the fourth edition in 2019, the annual race was certified as one of the running events with the world’s largest numbers of starters with a projected 150,000 runners after achieving a record of 101,000 starters in her third edition.

 

The “Run for Pasig River” held in Manila, Philippines in 2010 with 116, 086 starters currently hold the record of having the most participants in a running event.

 

With a steady and consistent increase in number of participants from over 50,000 in the first edition in 2016, to 73,000 in 2017 and 101,000 in 2018, the Lagos city Marathon is the most sought after Marathon in Africa.

 

Until Access Bank Lagos City Marathon in 2016, the city of Lagos has not hosted a full international marathon in 31 years and in its first two editions, the race achieved a record of becoming the first race to win a World Athletics Bronze Label in Africa after two editions.

 

Not many expected a marathon organized in Nigeria to be counted among the best in the world in just two editions.

 

Access Bank Lagos City Marathon

Access Bank Lagos City Marathon

 

With the bronze medal award, the race became the third Marathon in the world to be awarded a bronze label after two editions behind Bournemouth and Brighton Marathons.

 

Nilayo Sports Management, the brain behind the annual event did not relent on its effrontery as they achieved what no marathon race in four editions ever did.

It is highly commendable that the race made history in its fourth edition as it became the first to achieve the prestigious World Athletics Silver Label in four editions.

 

No Marathon race in any major city has ever achieved a silver label in four editions.

 

The early signs that the event will be a global event was emerged in the first edition when over 50,000 lined up at the front of the National Stadium in Surulere.

 

Just last year, the annual race was honored by the World Athletics with the Elite Road Race Label as one of the most sought after elite races in the world.

 

In an interview with the CEO of Nilayo Sports Management, Bukola Oloapde in the year David Tumo, a Kenyan athlete set a new record at the race in a time of two hours, ten minutes, twenty-three seconds seven minutes and three seconds faster than Ethiopia’s Sintayehu Legese’s finishing time in 2019 .

 

Bukola Olopade Project Consultant Access Bank Lagos City Marathon

Bukola Olopade Project Consultant Access Bank Lagos City Marathon

 

Olopade, a foremost sports administrator said the mission of the race is to help and inspire people through running. “We are advancing our commitment to a more diverse, equitable, inclusive and socially Access Bank Lagos City Marathon —for our team, for our community, and for the sport we love, running “.

Chairman , Nilayo Sports Management , Bukola Olopade

Chairman , Nilayo Sports Management , Bukola Olopade

 

In four days’ time, the city of Lagos will entertain over 100,000 runners expected to participate in the full marathon and the 10km fun run at the seventh edition of the  annual Access Bank Lagos City Marathon.




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