Changes in prize money expected to bring more participants
The Great Ethiopian Run (GER) Sofi Malt Hawassa marathon race is scheduled to take place in Hawassa on February 26, 2023. This will be the event’s 11th iteration.
Hawassa City, the capital of the regional state of Sidama, is hosting the event, which is expected to draw a large crowd. Over 3,000 adults and 800 youngsters, as well as over 200 elite athletes representing 20 clubs, are expected to take part in the event.
Around 400,000 birr will be awarded to the winners of the men’s and women’s elite races, as confirmed by the event’s organizers. Men and women who finish the race in under 60 minutes and 70 minutes, respectively, will each get 100,000 birr. It was also mentioned that the prize money would be split among the athletes who finished in the stated time.
The men’s and women’s course records stand at 61:53 and 72:12 minutes, respectively. Bazezew Asmare and Tiruye Mesfin both achieved their marks in February 2022.
Winners of the men’s and women’s elite races will each get 50,000 birr, double the amount awarded last year. Runners-up receive 15,000 birr, and those who finish in third place get 10,000 birr. All 10 top athletes will receive cash prizes.
The organizers of the marathon are hoping to boost participation by offering more lucrative rewards. Tamirat Tola of Ethiopia, who won the marathon in 2013, and Wilson Chebet of Kenya, who won in 2010, are two examples of past winners.
Though not for the first time, the GER, an annual international 10-kilometer race held in Addis Ababa, has been deemed “the world’s best 10K” race by the publication Runner’s World.
It’s the second year in a row that Runner’s World has ranked Ethiopia’s premier race as number one. The race is also, by far, the largest on the African continent.
“This achievement is for the whole country. It belongs to our athletes, who have supported our race from the very start. It is also due to the support we receive each year from so many stakeholders, including a range of government agencies. I want to thank the government for their support,” Dagmawit Amare, managing director of GER, said.
The race has been held regularly since 2001, with 45,000 participants. It is also renowned as one of the world’s most vibrant and colorful races. With thousands of people participating in a combination of running, walking, and dancing along the route, it is also evolving into the largest street celebration in Ethiopia.