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Eye of Riyadh
Sports | Monday 12 February, 2024 8:58 am |
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Saudi Sports for All Federation welcomes more than 20,000 participants for 2024 Riyadh Marathon

More than 20,000 participants from 125 countries, including a record 60% Saudi nationals, took part in the third edition of the Riyadh Marathon on February 10 – an increase of more than 33%, with 15,000 runners in 2023. 

 

For the first time, the start and finish line, and the accompanying Marathon Village, were located next to Kingdom Arena and Boulevard World. From there, competitors of all ages and abilities could enjoy one of four races – the full marathon (42.2km), half marathon (21.1km), 10km, and 4km family run. Across the four races, there were more than 20,000 participants, with a significant increase in female runners, exceeding 7,200. In total, 64% were males, with 36% female.

 

The top three elite male marathon runners were Kigen Wilfred Kirwa of Kenya, Tilahun Abe Gashahun of Ethiopia, and El Ghouz Anouar of Morocco, who were awarded US$30,000, US$20,000, and US$10,000 respectively. The top three female elite marathon runners, receiving the same amounts, were Badane Bedatu Hirpa, Desta Nigist Muluneh, and Jebesa Zenebu Fikadu, all from Ethiopia. Prizes for elite runners in the half marathon started at US$5,000 for first place.

 

SFA President HRH Prince Khaled bin Alwaleed bin Talal Al Saud said: “In line with the mandate of the Saudi Vision 2030 initiative, events such as this are building a healthier, happier population. And with increasing numbers of participants from abroad, we are raising Saudi Arabia’s profile as a sporting nation.”

 

SFA Managing Director Shaima Saleh Al-Husseini said: “The remarkable figure of 36% female participation underscores our concerted efforts to empower women through sports, and helps to realize the ambitious goals of Saudi Vision 2030. This milestone achievement heralds a brighter, healthier future.”

 

Organized by the Saudi Sports for All Federation (SFA), in collaboration with the Ministry of Sport, the Saudi Arabian Olympic & Paralympic Committee, and the Saudi Arabian Athletic Federation, the event sponsors included Saudi Awwal Bank, and headline sponsors ROSHN, PepsiCo, ASICS, Twauniya, Genesis, and Al Arabiya, with a total of US$197,000 in cash prizes awarded to winners. The event was also sponsored by JPMorgan, Hisamitsu, Activia, L’Oréal, GSK, CALO, Kudu, Delta Sports, and MDLBeast.

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