Felix Ekikana the winner of the inaugural edition of the Entebbe Marathon held a fortnight ago, runner up Robert Lubega and 21km winner John Kateregga are set to compete with thousands of other runners from around the globe in the Wuhan Marathon due April 10 in China.
Lubega and Kateregga accompanied by Entebbe Municipality top leadership received their air tickets from the Chinese ambassador to Uganda Zheng Zhuqiang at the Chinese embassy on Friday.
Ekikana whose ticket is courtesy of the Africa Gold Refinery clocked 2:15:38 to win the 42km race with Lubega coming second in 2:16:10, while Kateregga made1:07:24 to win the 21km race in the China Communication Construction Company (CCCC) sponsored event, to win the all-expenses paid trip to the annual Chinese Marathon where they stand a chance to win cash.
Last year’s Wuhan Marathon attracted over 20,000 runners from 36 countries.
The Entebbe marathon was held as part of preparation for the main Wuhan Marathon under a partnership Entebbe Municipality has with the Chinese city.
“I hope Entebbe representation can win medals from this international marathon and I hope you enjoy the life in Wuhan. It is an international event and many runners from different countries have been invited,” Zheng said.
“We hope this cooperation will be strengthened so that the youth of Entebbe continue to benefit from the relationship with Wuhan City,” he added.
Speaking on behalf of the athletes Kateregga thanked the ambassador and the sponsors for making it possible.
“This is the first opportunity to fly so I would like to thank all the sponsors for making it possible. We promise we shall do our best to win medals,”Kateregga said.
Entebbe Mayor Vincent De Paul Kayanja said through the partnership Entebbe community were already benefitting through different projects.
“The input of the Uganda Police further enhanced the importance of this event and we intend to make it annual and international and the only one that feeds into the Wuhan Marathon,” Kayanja stated.
The function was attended by among others the Chinese Embassy Commercial Councillor Xiufen Zhao, CCCC Acting Country Manager Zheng Biao, Entebbe Town Clerk Charles Magumba and Chairman Tourism Association of Uganda Boniface Byamukama.