Again, Ethopians Shine At Obudu Mountain Race

by crossriverwatch admin

The 8th edition of the Obudu International Mountain race ended today with the 2 time winner, Abebe Dinkesa and Etenesh Dironeda from Ethopia emerging champions in the male and female category of the African Nations Mountain Running Championship smiling home with $50,000 cash and trophies.

Dinkesa who braced the tape in 1.00.58 hours had won the race in 2008, 2010 while Dironeda is winning for the first time.

Interestingly, since the championship started in 2005 no winner has been able to defend his or her title in succeeding race.

Macdonarad Ondara from Kenya came second with 1.02.00hours while Robert Chemosine also from Kenya took the third position with 1.03.00 hours.

In the female race, Dironeda clocked 1.00.03 hours to take first, the 2007 winner Rita Jepto from Kenya came second in 2012 clocking 1.02.45 hours while Kipoech Paskalia from Kenya emerged third in 1.04.02 hours.

In the Nigerian category, the lads from Plateau State swept the first three and first two positions in the male and female category.

Emmanuel Gyang from Pankshin took first in 1.11 hours, Gideon Goyep 1.12 hours and Danjuma Gyang 1.14 hours from Vom took second and third positions respectively while in the female race, Deborah Pam came first for Nigeria and 8th in the African championship in 1.12.49 hours, Janet Dung 1.13.15 hours and 13 year old Jacinta Machu 1.15.15 hours from the Ranch community emerged second and third in Nigeria and 9th and 10th in the world.

Commenting on the outcome of the race, Dinkesa who was full of excitement told crossriverwatch that unlike last year which he came distant 11th, “I prepared very well for this race and I am happy I won. The new course is very tough and it is amazing”.

Basking with confidence, Dinkesa who wedded this year said he was dedicating the victory to his wife and promised to come back stronger in the 2013 edition of the championship.

“winning the race and conquering the mountain was not easy because the course is rugged and hilly, but I will come back next year and I am not afraid of any challenger”, he said.

Commenting on the 8th edition of the Obudu Mountain race, the Cross River State Deputy Governor Mr. Efiok Cobham said he was quite impressed with the entire organization and the performance of Nigerian athletes indicating they are taking the race more seriously and the state’s sports comprehensive programme is yielding result.

He expressed the hope that “by next year we will do better and in 2014 Nigeria will be under the first five or even win the race”.

On challenges that faced the championship this year, Cobham said it was infrastructure and there was need for the
government to put more structure on ground to take care of accommodation problems.

The Deputy Governor who was thrilled with the performance of the Australian High Commissioner to Nigeria in the race gave the assurance that Nigeria was open for collaboration with Australia in technical aspect, funding and any other area.

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