Stanchart Nairobi Marathon to feature more expanded field this season

21km women winner Perin Nengambi display her winner's trophy during the Standard Chartered Nairobi Marathon on October 31st 2021[Boniface Okendo,standard]

The 19th edition of the Standard Chartered Nairobi Marathon was launched at the Nairobi Aboretum on Saturday morning.

The race, to be held on October 30 at the Uhuru Gardens in Nairobi, targets an expansive field of 25000 athletes this year.

 "The marathon will be held on the Southern Bypass route, we target 15000 athletes for the physical race and 10000 for the virtual run," marathon chairman Peter Gitau told Standard Sports.

The number targeted this season is more than those who took part in the competition last season.

"Last year, we had 5,600 athletes taking part in the virtual run and 2500 in the physical race due to the stringent covid-19 measures.

 "We are glad to increase the numbers this season to accommodate more athletes," said Gitau.

The registration for the championships will go on until October 16.\

 Gitau reiterated they will work together with national anti doping body, ADAK and Athletics Kenya (AK) to ensure winners rewarded have credible credentials.

 The AK chairman, General (Rtd) Jackson Tuwei pledged technical support to the race to make the competition a success.

 "The Southern Bypass route is a great venue to hold the run due to little interference by traffic," said Tuwei.

Tuwei hailed the marathon for being consistent over the years.

 "Kisumu and Mombasa marathons have since died but Standard Chartered Nairobi Marathon has stood the test of time.

"The race has even inspired other competitions like the Eldoret City Marathon which will be in its fifth edition next year," Tuwei said.

Tuwei explained that AK's Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Stanchart Marathon has been improved over time to make the race more eventful.

 "AK is also the first federation in the whole world to sign a deal with World Athletics to promote conservation of environment which is one of the key pillars that the Standard Chartered Nairobi Marathon is also supporting. "We are glad to be reading on the same page," said Tuwei.

While hailing the marathon for its beneficial objectives since its inception in 2003, Deputy Sports Commissioner Jaxon Indakwa explained that the race mission is in line with the Ministry of Sports goals.

"The marathon has helped in the unearthing of talents from the grassroots, establishing of other races and giving back to the society through its Seeing Is Believing initiative.

"The race has helped to rope in international athletes who have helped to publicised and market Kenya as a global tourist destination," underlined Indakwa.

 Apart from the Standard Group PLC who have come onboard as official media partners, other sponsors for the marathon so far are Subaru Kenya, AAR, Dimension Data, Nairobi County Government, Nairobi Aboretum, Tamarind Hotel among others.

Categories to be contested this year (both men and women: 1.5km 2.10km 3.Corporate run 4. 21km 5.21km wheelchair 6.42km 7.Virtual run