RUN WILD AT THE SAFARICOM MARATHON AT LEWA
June 2008 will witness one of the greatest events in the Kenyan sporting calendar, the Safaricom marathon. The 2008 Safaricom marathon gives participants an opportunity to experience the Kenyan wild in a most unique way.
What makes this marathon unique is that it is run within the Lewa Wildlife Conservancy a protected game reserve located at an altitude of 5,500 feet above sea level.
This year’s Safaricom Marathon will be run for the nineth time and is expected to attract competitors from all over the world.
The race, which is organized by Tusk Trust and Lewa Wildlife Conservancy in conjunction with one of Kenya’s major mobile phone network – Safaricom, is in support of conservation and community projects in the Lewa/Il Ngwesi area, in North Central Kenya, about four hours drive and a 45 minute flight from the capital, Nairobi.
Rugged, fun and breathtaking it is an enticing experience which has continued to inspire long distance runners and athletic fans alike. Regarded as one of the extraordinary endurance marathons in the world, runners of all abilities take part at Lewa; from walkers, to fun runners, amateurs, to world renowned professionals.
Many athletes from around the world come to join in the race, both to face this challenging wilderness race and for the chance to rub shoulders with some of Kenya's incomparable long distance superstars.
The Lewa marathon is run on dirt roads, over a 42km route (21km for the half-marathon), through some of the world’s most beautiful scenery. Its picturesque setting makes the marathon all the more worthwhile. With Mount Kenya to the south and Samburu and Mount Lololokwe to the north, this backdrop adds to the whole Lewa experience.
The Lewa Wildlife Conservancy is a protected, 55,000 acre wildlife sanctuary and is home to over 80 rhino, herds of elephant and a vast assortment of game, including the eland, zebra, giraffe, buffalo just to name a few.
To enhance the safety of the event the course is watched over by a large and experienced team of game rangers, with a helicopter and spotter plane to ensure the safety of runners throughout the race. Water stations and first aid points are situated every 2.5km, with medical support provided by AMREF and the Red Cross.
The main purpose of the Safaricom Marathon at Lewa is to raise the much needed funds for wildlife conservation and community projects in Kenya. This joint community partnership between the Il Ngwesi community tourism project and private ranch owners has created a sanctuary for wildlife.
The project breeds endangered rhinos and provides a safe haven and habitat for species threatened by growing human populations in surrounding areas. The Lewa conservancy protects 6% of the country's population of endangered Black Rhino, and 20% of the world's population of rare Grevy's Zebra.
Lewa marathon entrants facilitate the conservation effort by fundraising and seeking sponsorship for their participation, with the funds going directly to the conservation projects, community development, education and healthcare in northern Kenya.
Tusk Trust is the official NGO associated with the Safaricom Marathon and has been instrumental in the organization and distribution of funds raised by the event since 2000.
Come run wild at the Safaricom marathon at Lewa on the 28th of June and support a noble cause.
For More information visit:
Lewa Wildlife Conservancy