Record-breaking 25,000 runners to compete in 5th ADNOC Abu Dhabi Marathon

Among the elite athletes representing 159 nationalists taking part this year will be Uganda’s Andrew Kwemoi who the 2023 Milano Marathon

By KT Sport

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Suhail Al-Arifi, Executive Director of the Events Sector at Abu Dhabi Sports Council and Khalid Al Hosani, SVP Group General Services at ADNOC during the press conference - Supplied photo
Suhail Al-Arifi, Executive Director of the Events Sector at Abu Dhabi Sports Council and Khalid Al Hosani, SVP Group General Services at ADNOC during the press conference - Supplied photo

Published: Fri 15 Dec 2023, 1:35 PM

A record-breaking 25,000 runners made up of168 nationalities will compete alongside a host of elite athletes in the fifth edition of the ADNOC Abu Dhabi Marathon on Saturday morning.

Organised by Abu Dhabi Sports Council and ADNOC, the ADNOC Abu Dhabi Marathon is recognised as one of the Middle East’s premier marathon events, with a prize fund of $303,000.

The Marathon organising committee confirmed the completion of the preparations for the event and the most prominent international runners, male and female, were revealed at the conference.

Among the elite athletes taking part this year will be Uganda’s Andrew Kwemoi, winner of the 2023 Milano Marathon and Kenya’s Ilham Tanui Ozbilen and Emily Kipchumba.

Suhail Al-Arifi, Executive Director of the Events Sector at Abu Dhabi Sports Council said: “The remarkable confirmed participation this year of more than 25,000 runners signifies the substantial growth of the ADNOC Abu Dhabi Marathon over the years.

Top runners posing with Falah the Mascot. - Supplied photo
Top runners posing with Falah the Mascot. - Supplied photo

“With 168 nationalities represented at the race, including an intriguing elite line up, it showcases the event’s significance locally and globally.

“This fifth time organising and hosting the ADNOC Abu Dhabi Marathon is certainly a special occasion,” he added. “The marathon route will take you on a tour around the most famous landmarks in our beautiful capital, starting from the ADNOC headquarters, passing through the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque, Al Hosn Palace, and the World Trade Centre.”

Al-Arifi expressed his gratitude to all sponsors, official partners, media partners and suppliers, who are contributing to the success of the ADNOC Abu Dhabi Marathon.

Beyond its burgeoning reputation as a platform for global athletic excellence, this year’s marathon incorporates several eco-initiatives dedicated to promoting sustainability. The organisers have pledged their commitment to ensure, wherever feasible, a positive impact of the event on the community and environment.

Khalid Al Hosani, SVP Group General Services at ADNOC, said: “The ADNOC Abu Dhabi Marathon continues to positively impact the UAE community and cement Abu Dhabi’s global reputation as a world-class sporting destination.

Top runners addressing during the press conference on Thursday. - Supplied photo
Top runners addressing during the press conference on Thursday. - Supplied photo

“We are thrilled to welcome participants from around the world to this fifth edition which promises to provide an unforgettable, inclusive experience grounded in health, resilience, and the spirit of unity.”

Kenyan Brigid Kosgei , a two-time winner at both the Chicago and London Marathons, remarked: “I’m very excited to test myself here in Abu Dhabi. Two of my training mates have both run here [in this city] and won on these roads, so I want to make my training camp shine again.

“I’ve never been to Abu Dhabi before, but I can see it’s a very nice track. I have come here to run the Marathon and win the race. I want to take the [gold] medal this year.”

Emily Kipchumba, a Kenyan long-distance runner, added: “I love to run in Abu Dhabi as it is a very good place to be. I’m very happy to close my Marathon season here in Abu Dhabi. I’m well prepared and I hope to run my personal best. I get a lot of motivation from running against Brigid.”

Kenya’s Paul Kipngetich Tanui, a silver medallist at the Rio de Janiero Olympics in 2016, had a powerful message for his fellow participants ahead of the gruelling 42.195 km race on Saturday.

“The Abu Dhabi Marathon has always been one of my favourite races,” Tanui said during a press conference held at the ADNOC Abu Dhabi Marathon – Event Village.

“The Marathon is a challenge and a great opportunity for us all. When we start running and begin chalking off those miles, I know it will motivate us [all] to keep going – especially when we see everyone on the road supporting us. This is a journey and we must finish.”

Meanwhile, Turkish runner Ilham Tanoy Ozbilin is in high spirits ahead of his first-ever Marathon appearance this weekend. He commented: “It’s my first Marathon and I’ll be expecting to run good. I have a good feeling about this place, so I hope everything will go well.”

Kwemoi, who won his first Marathon in April, is also looking forward to running in the UAE capital once more.

He said: “I am happy to come to Abu Dhabi for the Marathon. It is good to be back here again.”

ALSO READ

The ADNOC Abu Dhabi Marathon caters to various fitness levels, offering race categories including the marathon (42.195 km), marathon relay, 10km, 5km, and 2.5km. All races will commence at different locations near the ADNOC headquarters on Corniche Road and finish at the ADNOC Campus, near Bainuna Public Park.

The daily Marathon Village, hosted at the ADNOC Campus, is accessible until race day, from 3pm to 10pm. The free-to-enter facility promises an immersive experience for visitors with entertainment, a wide array of services.


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