Athletes at the maiden Effurun/Warri Peace marathon last year.
As preparations reach fever pitch for the Warri/Effurun Peace Marathon, athletes in the Niger Delta region are poised to deny the national elite runners the right to the win top prizes in the race billed for April 29 in Warri.
The 10km race is meant to promote peace in the area, the second edition was throne opened to national athletes who wished to participate and win the N300, 000 top prize in both the men and women categories. Special sports athletes have also been invited to participate.
But some of the local athletes who were seen training at the Warri Township Stadium, promised to outpace the elite runners from Plateau State who are expected to easily win.
There is a prize money bracket of N100,000 for the athletes from the Warri area, and they stand to rake in a double, if they can win overall. “Warri no go carry last for this race oh,” one of the athletes remarked.
However, according to former long distance runner, coach Umoru Mohammed the national elite athletes remain favourites to win the race.
“I know that athletes in Warri are really training hard for the race.
They hope to win the top prize, but the elite runners have the edge, they have so demonstrated over the years. We will only have an upset, if something extra-ordinary happens,” said the Edo- born coach.
Over 2,000 athletes and keep fit enthusiasts have registered to run the race.