High expectations as Tusker Lite Mt Rwenzori Marathon returns 

High expectations as Tusker Lite Mt Rwenzori Marathon returns 

During the launch of the inaugural Tusker Lite Mt. Rwenzori Marathon in June 2022 in Kasese, the organizers said that the main objectives of the event are; promoting tourism in Kasese and its surrounding areas, promote healthy lifestyles, shine a light on climate change and promote businesses in the locality and the like.

When the event happened later in September that year, all these boxes were ticked.

Well, the event is back for its second edition scheduled for Saturday, 2nd September 2023 still in the comely town of Kasese.

This year’s staging was officially launched on Tuesday, 23rd May at Rozaho Bistro in Kololo, Kampala by the organizers and sponsor representatives who were flanked by government officials.

It was preceded by a 3km run/walk in the locality by members of various running clubs, organizers and sponsor representatives.

Organizers are positive 

Amos Wekesa from Equator Hikes, the organizers of the marathon, is geared up for the second edition of the event after the inaugural do registered tremendous success and left a footprint in the area.

“We are targeting about 3,000 runners this year mainly because of the availability of the accommodation in Kasese and the surrounding areas. Kenya has promised to bring a lot of runners…and we are excited to have runners from across the region,” Wekesa said adding that; “we have a team that is dedicated to ensuring the event is successful.”

Sponsor’s delight

Emmy Hashakimana, the Marketing and Innovations Director at Uganda Breweries Ltd, whose Tusker Lite brand is the title sponsor of the marathon says that they’re more than just an enjoyment company because they impact communities through value chains hence creating positive impact in communities.

“If you think about the impact that we do to the famers, over 20,000 farmers actually contribute to the raw materials that we use in the factory. There are people we work with all through to the supply chain. Actually if you think about the value chain, for every 10,000 Shillings that we sell on a bottle of something that you enjoy, UBL takes about 2,000…it’s something we are proud of,” Hashakimana noted.

Hashakimana added that the marathon will undoubtedly be rewarding to the runners as they can enjoy the scenery and the wildlife of the area during and after the event.

“We are hoping to shine a light on a very beautiful part of Uganda. There is so much variety in the area on a tourism perspective and we believe the place should be generating huge amounts of money from it. I believe having activities like this in the area will shine a spotlight on it,” Hashakimana added.

Tusker Lite will also be organizing a series of engaging activities and activations designed to prepare participants and build excitement for the main event in September. The brand will collaborate with running clubs, gyms and bars that will not only bring together running enthusiasts to train but also create a buzz within the community, offering opportunities for participants to register for the marathon.

Ministry of Tourism gets on board 

Minister of State for Tourism, Wildlife and Antiquities, Hon. Martin MugarraBahinduka graced this year’s edition’s launch. He revealed that the ministry is on board as one of the partners and has labeled the Tusker Lite Mt Rwenzori Marathon a fast evolving initiative that creates a huge, positive impact on Uganda’s tourism.

“The ministry of tourism might the biggest beneficiary of this marathon, even better than Tusker Lite,” Mugarra noted adding that he is grateful to the architects of the idea.

“The Rwenzori region is so huge and so is its potential. After running, someone can do other activities like hiking the mountain, sight-seeing at various national parks and sceneries in Kasese and the surrounding areas,” Mugarra noted adding that government is committed to supporting the tourism industry.

Safety assurance 

Hon. Godfrey BalukuKabyanga, the state minister for National Guidance in the ministry of ICT and former Kasese Municipality Mayor has assured runners of safety in the area.

“We welcome you to the second edition of the marathon but you should come before the event so that you visit many parts of the area. We support this marathon because we want to portray Kasese differently,” Kabyanga said adding that they also want to create awareness of the impact of climate change in the area and planting trees will be one of the activities to be done.

“Security will be tight and people can move anywhere at any time. I was mayor of the town for ten years so when you are in Kasese, I can take you anywhere and I will ensure that where you are served,” Kabyanga noted.

Variety to choose from

The marathon is tailored to cater to runners of all skills levels. Participants can choose from the 42km full marathon, 21km half-marathon and a 5km fun run. Each will provide a unique opportunity for individuals to test their limits and enjoy the breathtaking beauty of the Rwenzori Mountain ranges.

Registration is already on and organisers have announced early bird rates of Shs50,000 for East African Community residents and $50 for international runners that are valid until the end of June. From July, the rates will be Shs60,000 for East African community residents and $60 for international runners. Registration is through the marathon website; www.mtrwenzori.com

“I urge those intending to participate to register early. Entries will close on August 1, or as soon as we reach capacity,” Wekesa added.

Other partners

Other esteemed sponsors of the event include Standard Chartered Bank, Hima Cement, UNDP, Coca Cola &Rwenzori Mineral Water and Rocket Health.

The partner representatives available at the press conference were; Joan Kitawona (Hima Cement) and Moses Rutahigwa (Standard Chartered Bank).

2022 recap

The first edition of the marathon registered over 800 runners, but this year the number is expected to have more than triple that number as it has attracted interest from runners all over the world.

Meanwhile, on his marathon debut, Allan Andiema won the 42km men’s category of the inaugural Tusker Lite Mt. Rwenzori Marathon.

Andiema, 23 came atop a huge field of marathoners after posting a winning time of 2:31:51 to take home the UGX5M cash prize after arriving first at the finish line that was stationed at Stanley Street.

BahatiSadic came second with a time of 2:33:23 whilst Patrick Omara capped the men’s 42km podium with 2:36:35 taking home UGX4M and UGX3M respectively. Fourth and fifth placed David Solimo (2:38:08) and Alex Chebe (2:39:42) claimed UGX2M and UGX1M respectively.

Meanwhile, in the women’s 42km category, Kenya’s IsgahCheruto who won the 2021 Dodoma Marathon took gold in Kasese after posting a winning time of 2:51:01. Ugandan pair of Harriet Agnes Amuron (2:51:55) and Priscilla Chelengat (2:54:46) completed the podium. The same criteria of awards in the men’s category was applied in the women’s as well.

Emily Jepkoech (2:57:09) finished fourth while Sheila Ejalu was the final player in the money bracket after finishing fifth with (3:03:18).

The 21km women’s category was won by AnnetChesang of Uganda who posted a winning time of 1:21:29 while the men’s winner was Douglas Chebii of kenyay who posted a winning time of 1:05:56. They each walked home with a cash prize of UGX3M whilst runners up and second runners up returned home with UGX2M and UGX1M respectively.

A huge number of runners took part in the 5km category as it attracted people who preferred shorter races.

Related post

Explore West: Government launches campaign to promote domestic tourism 

Explore West: Government launches campaign to promote domestic tourism 

By Evans Najuna Kampala – The Ministry Tourism, Wildlife and Antiquities, through Uganda Tourism Board (UTB) on Tuesday launched a local…
Mugaba Cultural Heritage: Museveni summons Ankole Cultural leaders, Political Leaders to discuss Ankole Cultural issues

Mugaba Cultural Heritage: Museveni summons Ankole Cultural leaders, Political…

By Evans Najuna  Mbarara– President Museveni has summoned Ankole Cultural leaders, LC5 Chairperson and MPs to discuss Ankole cultural issues. This…
Gov’t To Title Over 100 acres Of Land In Lango For Tourism

Gov’t To Title Over 100 acres Of Land In…

By Our Reporter Government through the Ministry of Tourism, Wildlife and Antiquities wants to gazette over 100 acres of Land in…

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *