Oluwaseun Olamide, winner of the Nigeria women prize money at the inaugural edition of the Access Bank Lagos City Marathon, held in 2016, has vowed not only to reclaim her title on Saturday, February 10, 2018 but also challenge East African and other elite runners for the ultimate prize.
“It’s a shame I finished eighth last year,’’ she said. ‘’I was just recovering from injury; but this time I am injury free and psychologically I am in the right frame of mind as I won the two road races I competed in recently. The races were part of my build up for the Access Bank Lagos City Marathon.”
After her not too impressive showing at the 2017 marathon, Olamide has won the Lagos Women Run and ARM Pensions Marathon.
With the increase in the Nigeria prize money from N1m to N3m, and the ultimate prize of money of $50,000, Olamide definitely is looking at a big pay day.
“Winning the prize money will be a good thing, but my aim is to show the world that Nigeria is not just a sprint nation and that we have very good marathoners who can compete against the best in the world.’’
She is equally not scared of the foreign elites, saying: “I am happy running against foreign elite athletes because each time I did, I always run a new personal best. So, I am looking forward to competing against them and winning on Saturday.’’
She posited that the only advantage the foreign elites have over Nigerians was that their societies provide the enabling environment for their talents to blossom.
“We need more marathons and road races in Nigeria. Access Bank Lagos City Marathon is good, but we need to have more. Once we do and they are lucrative, many youth who are into crimes and other unprofitable ventures would focus their energy on races,” Olamide said.
Meanwhile the organisers on Monday began trainning for the technical officials and security personnel,according to the General Manager of the Lagos City Marathon Mr Yusuf Alli over 350 officials will be trained in order to be ready for whatever challenge the event will throw up.