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30 Days To Go: High expectations as countdown begins for 10th gold label Okpekpe 10km road race

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Expectations are high as the 10th edition of the Okpekpe international 10km road race marks 30 days before the start of the first World Athletics label road race in West Africa.

Organizers of the historic says a lot of prgrammes have been lined up to commemorate the 10th anniverssary of the first race to be internationally recognized and the first to have its race course measured by a World Athletics certified course measurer.

‘We are celebrating the 10th anniverssary of the race that opened the door to others in Nigeria to get World Athletics recognition,’ says Dare Esan, the media and activation director of the race.

Esan says this year’s race will see the assemblage of world class athletes who want to follow in the footsteps of some Okpekpe race champions who have gone on to carve indelible niches for themselves at the World Championships and World road running championships.

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‘We are also optmistic the race will produce its first sub-28 minutes runner as we have confirmed Daniel Ebenyo, the defending men’s 10km race winner and World Athletics Championships and World Road Running Championships silver medalist for the event.

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‘Ebenyo set a new 28:28 course record last year and the certainly much improved 28 year old is coming back to not only become the first man to successfully defend an Okpekpe race but also the first to run sub-28 minutes over the distance,’ added Esan.

Esan also revealed everything is almost ready for another world class delivery of the only gold label 10km road race in Nigeria, especially the volunteers who have always worked to make the race the resounding success it has been since the first edition as a label race in 2015.

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‘We are going to be making use of undergraduates students from both the Edo state University in Uzaire and the Auchi Polytechnic in Auchi as volunteers with most of them drawn from relevant departments so that they can practical experience of what they have been taught. We started this programmed last year and it was a huge success.’

This year’s race will hold on Saturday May 25 in Okpekpke in Edo state.

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