Turkana Half Marathon winners to get camels
Camels will be up for grabs in the inaugural Marsabit Lake Turkana Cultural festival half marathon slated for May 19-21 in Loiyangalani, Marsabit County.
This will be the first time the marathon is being run since its inception of the annual cultural festival nine years ago.
The race is part of the Great North Heritage Run organized by Seamless Creatives and Event Management with this being the first round of the 2016 season whose objective is to mobilize pastoral communities for peace and harmony through cultural diversity.
The races in the series are the Iten Half Marathon in Elgeyo- Marakwet on June 16-18, then Lake Turkana Half Marathon, Lodwar edition on July 14-16 and ultimately the Isiolo Half Marathon on August 25-27.
Marsabit Governor Ambassador Ukur Yatani said in line with the traditions of the Borana community, camels are traditionally considered prestigious and it is for that reason they want to gift winners with the animal.
“We shall give female camels and cash prizes to winners in the half marathon and 10km races,” said the Governor.
The winner in the elite 21km and 10km will each get a camel and cash, the second placed runner will be feted with a cow and money and then the third to the tenth placed runners will each be gifted with a goat and cash.
The race will take place along the shores of Lake Turkana from Sarima and ending in Loiyangalani.
The top local runner to finish in both 21km and 10km will also be feted with a camel and cash as the other nine finishers get a goat and money.
Yatani said the registration was open adding that they have so far registered 629 athletes and were targeting 2000 runners.
The Governor urged runners from outside the county to register saying that the event will be graced by the 2008 Beijing 800m gold medalist and Team Kenya captain Wilfred Bungei as the celebrity guest.
“We also hope to have runners from the neighbouring Ethiopia famed for top middle and long distance runners to give our event an international stature,” said Yatani.