They were among some 226 runners from nine countries who thrilled the population in Buea.
Gabsibuin Godlove Bobuin from the North West Region of Cameroon has won the 2018 Mount Cameroon Race of Hope in Buea. He lifted the trophy worth a cashprize of FCFA 10 million last Saturday 17 February, 2018 in the male senior category.
Gabsibuin finished the race at the Buea Omnisports Stadium (Molyko) in 4 hours 30 minutes 47 seconds. This year’s winner fell short of last year’s record by seven minutes.
Coming in the second and third positions were respectively Fai Elvis Ndzedzeni from the North West (Cameroon) in 4 hours 38 minutes 21 seconds and Chelimo Luka Kipkemoi from Kenya in 4 hours 41 minutes.
In the female senior category, Tatah Carine from the North West won the race in 5 hours 26 minutes 56 seconds also lifting the FCFA 10 million trophy. She was closely followed by Ngalim Lisette Nasila. Wirgo Kpuufanla came third.
Opening the race event on the eve (16 February) in the Buea Omnisports stadium, Cameroon’s Minister of Sports and Physical Education, Bidoung Mkpatt, stated that it was an occasion to celebrate the basic values of sports, boost Cameroon’s image as a beautiful country referred to in international milieus as Africa in miniature.
He underscored that the presence of delegations from eight visiting countries at this year’s rendezvous magnified the virtue of humanity in sports which brings together all people beyond borders, cultures and religions. The Minister rejoiced that the Mount Cameroon race was another opportunity for the mixing of the populations for national integration.
He highlighted this year’s international rendezvous in Buea as special for coming at a time when Cameroon was looking forward to hosting a major continental event of AFCON 2019. To the various delegations from abroad, the Minister expressed optimism that they would go back publicising the splendour of Cameroon, her legendary hospitality, cultural diversity and dynamism of its sports movement.
The event in Buea last weekend certainly beat the challenge of security against a backdrop of sociopolitical threats from unknown persons.
One could observe combat ready Police and Military personnel along the track, around the Municipal stadium and in strategic positions of Buea city. The military helicopter flew round the town and watched over the race track. In terms of organisation, the 2018 race of hope fielded some 229 runners after disqualifying a similar number for health and technical related reasons.
Many wrong candidates precipitated to register when they were hypertensive, some carried biting hernia, while others did not have a sufficiently pumping heart to withstand the tedious exercise.