Three times World Cross Country team winner Hosea Mwok Machariyang will be defending the Madoka Half Marathon title in Ngerenyi, Taita-Taveta County on October 21.
Machariyang from West Pokot seeking is seeking to equal the record set by the 2012 World Half Marathon bronze medallist John Mwangangi of winning two races in the high altitude hilly course in Wundanyi.
Machariyang is expected to have an uphill task in defending the title and equalling Mwangangi’s record as he faces the 2014 champion Kisii’s Omari De Klerk and Mombasa Marathon winner Jackson Ruto.
Machariyang unleashed his bag of experience to eclipse his closest rival Nichodemus Kipkurui (1.07.22) in one of the very competitive races ever.
The women’s defending champion and course record holder Elgeyo Marakwet’s Lucy Cheruiyot will be seeking to retain the title as the Mombasa International Marathon winner Ruth Kosgey standing in her way.
The event which is organized by Tesia Isanga Organisation (TIO) will fete the winners of the half marathon with Sh5000, 000 for winner, Sh250, 00 for second placed runner as the third placed athlete bag Sh10, 000.
Speaking at the launch, the chairman of Tesia Isanga Organisation and the race’s founder of Major (Retired) Marsden Madoka, who received sponsorships from various sponsors, noted that the race has produced world beaters and hinted that plans are under way to put up a high altitude training centre in Taita Taveta.
“This place has similar weather conditions to those in the Rift Valley hence the need to have a training centre in the Coastal region. We have the potential here,” said Madoka, who was accompanied by Athletics Kenya President Senior Vice President Paul Mutwii.
The event’s key Sponsors are Safaricom Limited, Grain Bulk Handlers, Kenya Revenue Authority, Kenya Ports Authority, Taita Taveta County Government, Brookside Dairy and Amaco Insurance.