The inaugural PPC Msasa 42km marathon is set to attract a huge number of top athletes when the competition begins at the cement manufacturer’s Msasa depot in Harare this morning.
BY SPORTS REPORTER
PPC Cement already sponsors another marathon event in Bulawayo, the Matopos 33 Miler, and have resolved to sponsor another one in Harare.
In an interview with Standardsport, Athletics Association of Zimbabwe secretary-general Silas Muringani said the event was primed to exceed expectations, judging by entries as of last Wednesday.
“It’s the inaugural event here in Harare and it’s attracting a lot of athletes such that by Wednesday we had over 200 entries. We are expecting that figure to double by the time of the race day,” Murungani said.
“It’s also attracting big names of Zimbabwe marathon with the likes of Cuthbert Nyasango, Jonathan Chinyoka, Wirimai Juwawo, Pangiso Phangiso, Gilbert Mutandiro, Cephas Pasipamire, Olivia Chitate and Monica Kativu, among others.”
Competition will come in the main 42,2km marathon category as well as the 21,1km race while non-professional runners are expected to join in the spirit of the day at a more relaxed pace — the 5km fun run/walk.
The PPC Msasa Marathon is sponsored to the tune of $16 000 in prize money, with winners of the professional categories both male and female pocketing $1 000 each.
The event coincides with the commissioning of PPC’s new state-of-the-art cement plant in Msasa.
Muringani expressed gratitude to PPC for sponsoring the marathon event in Harare.
“We are grateful to PPC for showing great faith in our association to sponsor the marathon, they are such a blessing to us. This marathon affords our athletes a chance to prepare for upcoming qualifying events for the World Championships,” he said.