Ethiopian and Kenyan athletes dominate the podium, in both the male and female categories, at the first ever Port-Harcourt International Marathon held in the Nigerian oil-rich Niger Delta.
The first prize of $10,000 dollars went to an Ethiopian born athlete, Male-Bazu Worku, with fellow country man Mohammed Abda coming second while the third position went to Festus Langat of Kenya.
In the female category, Ethiopian athletes had a clean sweep with Atemitu Abera coming first, Firehighwot Dadotufa came second while Radiya Adloroba took the third position and they received their prizes of $10,000, $7,000, and $5,000 respectively.
Over 3,500 athletes participated in the 21.098km international marathon race flagged off by the River State Governor, Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi, who assured participants that the 2010 edition of the marathon event would be better both in organization and prize money.
Dajuma Kipkudi led the Nigerian winners in male category while John Bulus and Gowok Joshua were runners up. Binatu Yohana was the female national winner while Queensly Asedo and Nancy Matthews were the runners-up respectively.
Obo Nke was the overall best male Rivers athlete at the marathon with Ita Okon and Anthony Dagogo coming second and third respectively while Ibimina Harrison, David Chidinma and Sabri Sole were the female victors from Rivers State.
At the end, the second Vice President of the Athletic Federation of Nigeria (AFN) Dr Gloria Chukukere described the first ever International Marathon in the state as a historic event and lauded athletes for their large turnout.