by crossriverwatch admin
Ugandan mountain runners have thrown down the gauntlet for the rest of the world and African nations coming to Nigeria for the 9th Obudu International Mountain Race and the fifth African Mountain Running Championships holding at the Obudu Ranch Resort in Obudu, Cross River State on Saturday, November 23.
The Ugandans, twice winners of the African Nations Championships men’s title (2010 and 2011) will be banking on the form of their men at the 29th WMRA World Mountain Running Championships at Krynica Zdro in Poland last month to make history as the first African nation to win the men’s team title three times.
The Ugandans swept the top four places at the championships and earned a gold team medal with a perfect score of 10.
Philip Kiplimo won over the three-lap 13.56km course in 54:22 putting more than half-a-minute between himself and his nearest rival Geoffrey Kusuro, with his better-known compatriot crossing the line in 55:06.
Fellow team mates Nathan Ayeko and Peter Kibet were third and fourth respectively in 55:19 and 55.27 respectively.
The major obstacle to Uganda’s historic attempt will be the Ethiopians who, apart from dominating the individual event have also won the men’s team title twice.
Meanwhile Cross River state Commissioner for Sports and Youth Development, Patrick Ugbe, has expressed happiness with the performance of Uganda at the World Championships in Poland and believes this year’s team events will be keenly contested.
“This is good for the race. It will now make it more competitive and I believe this year’s edition will be the best ever in terms of performance and attendance,” he noted.
The Obudu International Mountain Race is organised by the Cross River State Government, in conjunction with the Athletic Federation of Nigeria (AFN). It enjoys tremendous support from the African Athletics Confederation (CAA), the World Mountain Running Association, (WMRA) and the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF).
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