No fewer than 100,000 athletes from 27 countries including Nigeria will be participating in the second edition of Access Bank Lagos Marathon billed to hold from 7am to 2pm on February 11, 2017.
64 elite athletes from 26 countries and 102 from Nigeria, as well as 30 special athletes will also be participating in the marathon scheduled to start from National Stadium in Surulere and terminate at Eko Atlantic City in Victoria Island.
Addressing a world press conference on Friday at Eko Hotels and Suites, Lagos State Governor, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode, said adequate preparations have been put in place to ensure a successful event, assuring that the marathon had been designed to be bigger and better than the previous edition.
Ambode, who addressed the briefing alongside President of the Athletics Federation of Nigeria, Mr Solomon Ogba; Acting President of International Association of Ultra runners, Mr Nadeem Khan; representatives of International Association of Athletics Federations, and representatives of the sponsors of the event, said all the agencies of government participating in the event have been adequately mobilized, saying that Lagosians should expect the best.
Speaking on the idea behind investing in the marathon, Ambode, who was represented by his Special Adviser on Sports and Chairman of Lagos State Sports Commission, Mr Deji Tinubu, said the event was meant to showcase the excellence of Lagos to the world as well as encourage sporting activities among the people.
He said, “We want to show the world that Lagos can be and Lagos can do what it is expected of it as a mega city; we want to show to the world the tourism potential of Lagos; we want to show to the world that Lagos is safe; we want to show to the world that Lagos can be the choice destination for sports, tourism and entertainment and that is why we are doing this.”
While appreciating all the sponsors that partnered with the State, Ambode said it was gratifying to note that many of the participating athletes have picked up their running kits, while top notch security and logistics arrangements have been put in place.
He also said that the Sole Administrators of the Local Government Areas of the routes of the marathon have also been adequately mobilized, while arrangement for entertainment and fun packs have also been perfected for those not participating in the marathon.