Organizers of Okpekpe 10-kilometre Road Race in Edo, on Friday said athletes from 15 countries, including the U.S. would participate in the 7th edition of the competition on May 25.
The Chief Organizer, Mike Itemoagbo, made this known while briefing journalists in Benin.
Itemoagbo said that this year’s edition would witness clear track from the starting point to the finishing, adding that the organisers were aiming at upgrading the race to “a gold label”.
He listed some of the countries where the athletes would come from as Nigeria, South Africa, China, Zimbabwe, Ghana, Tanzania, Ethiopia and Kenya.
He said that the 7th edition would not allow vehicles and motor bikes on the road track “to save the athletes from air pollution”.
Head of the technical crew of the race, Yusuf Alli, said that 100 athletes would participate in the race, but did not name them.
“For you to have a good label you must have a minimum of seven gold label athletes from 10 countries but we are having from 15 countries; I think it is a very good thing.
“And, the most important thing in this year edition is that we must have a very good start and a good finishing,” he said.
In his remarks, Deputy Governor of Edo, Mr Philip Shaibu, assured that the state government was ready for competition, adding that the organisers were quite conscious of the rules and regulations of the competition.
Shaibu reiterated that vehicles and bikes would not be allowed in the race track to avoid pollution for the athletes.