MTN Kampala Marathon 2017 recap
Kololo Independence ground on Sunday 19th, November gathered over 20,000 participants for the 2017 MTN Kampala Marathon. The sporting event being one of Uganda’s largest event brought participants from all over the world to come run for a cause, and also giving back to the community.
For the previous years, participants were running for one cause, but MTN Uganda in partnership with partners this year made several changes including; participants choosing what cause they would represent between either improving Komamboga and Kiswa Maternal Health Centres or reducing Child Exposure to Cancer. In addition, they also introduced a 5km walk, increased on the cash prize of all winners from the 21km and 42km events and introduced awards medals to participants that finished in the top 100 under the 10km and all that finished the 21km and 42km events.
Kenya’s Sammy Kipngetich Kurgat emerged as the 2017 MTN Kampala Marathon 42 kilometres winner after crossing the line in 2:19:05 hours. Kurgat was flanked by two Ugandans;Robert Mutai and Robert Lubega in both second and third positions respectively.
Speaking to a section of the press following the close of the marathon, The Chief Marketing Officer of MTN Uganda Mr. Olivier Prentout was elated at the turnout.
“This was our 14th edition of the MTN Kampala Marathon and we as management, staff, partners, and sponsors were all truly impressed by the numbers of not only those who registered to run but also well-wishers, marathon enthusiasts and corporate companies that turned up,” Olivier stated.
Notably, at the elite end of the marathon, there was an improvement shown by Ugandan runners compared to previous editions when it came to results in the full 42km marathon and the half marathon 21km category. Whereas Kenyans took top honours in the elite 42k race for men and women races, Ugandans took 13 out of the 15 available slots in the Top 5 positions of the 42k, 21k and 10k race for both men and women.
This indeed was a better showing by Ugandans from previous events and this showed how important the MTN Kampala Marathon is in providing an avenue for Ugandans breakout marathon runners to show their talent and potential before selection for bigger marathon events like IAAF circuits and other international events.
Kimaiyo Rael Jepyator defended her title for the 3rd year running consecutively when she won the women’s category in 2:58:14 hours. Ugandans dominated the half Marathon with Robert Chemonges and Joel Ayeko emerging victors in 21 and 10 kilometers respectively.
Doreen Chesang and Peruth Chemutai won the 21 and 10 kilometers Women’s category respectively.