Peter Nwaniki of Kenya on Saturday won the 10-kilometre Lotus Bank/Abeokuta city road race with a time of 28 minutes 33 seconds.
The East Africans made a clean sweep of the top positions, with Kennedy Kipyeko and Abraham Akobeche winning the second and third positions respectively.
Also, Kenya’s Charity Agofure came fourth, while 28-year-old Francis James from Nigeria came fifth.
The race was organised by Nilayo Sports Management Limited to commemorate the 80th birthday of the Alake of Egbaland, Oba Adedotun Gbadebo.
It was keenly contested by more than 2,000 runners, including local and international participants, jostling for the 5,000 dollars top prize.
The Ogun Deputy Governor, Noimot Salako-Oyedele, Oba Gbadebo and the Managing Director of Lotus Bank, Kafilat Araoye, were part of dignitaries on the sidelines as the race began.
The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Nilayo Sports, Bukola Olopade, was also on the sidelines to direct affairs.
The race started from Iyana Oloke junction in Onikobolo and moved through Panseke, Omida, Isale-Igbein to Sapon, Ijemo, Itoko, Saje, Kugba and finally to the Ake Palace Ground.
Athletes from China, Nigeria ,Ethiopia and Kenya participated in the competition.
The winner received 5,000 dollars, while the first runner-up got was 3,000 dollars and the second runner-up 1,000 dollars.
Salako-Oyedele later congratulated all the athletes and assured that the state government would continue to invest heavily in sports development.
“It’s an opportunity for people to start to look for a career in sports. The state governor is committed to youth development.
“As we look forward to 2024, when Ogun will be hosting the National Sports Festival (NSF), we also call upon youths to support our Local Organising Committee (LOC) for the Festival to participate and also be spectators,” she said.
Nwaniki, while speaking on his victory, noted that the city’s good roads helped him to achieve his best time in the event.
“I am very happy with my performance today. The roads are very good, and they helped me to run my best time.
“I will like to come here again for another race,” he said.