Sunday, February 27, 2011

Mt Cameroon Race: Mbatcha Eric & Ngwaya Yvonne emerge champions

By Christopher Ambe Shu
2011 Mt Cameroon Race: first female arriving
Mbatcha Eric and Ngwaya Yvonne-both Cameroonians from the Northwest Region on Saturday February 26, emerged first in the male and female categories, respectively, of the 16th Edition of the Mount Cameroon Race of Hope, which ended hitch-free.
The race is run from the Buea- Molyko stadium to summit of Mt Cameroon and back to the stadium.
Mbatcha Eric, emerged the overall champion and first in the male category, covering the race distance  in  4hours 29 minutes .He smiled home with a trophy and cash prize of  three million Francs CFA.
 “I did not encounter major difficulties on the mountain because I had prepared well for this competition …. I am happy that I have made it after 12 years,” Mbatcha told reporters, particularly thanking his wife who “forced me to come and write my name in the history of the Chariots of God-Mt Cameroon
In the female category, Ngwaya Yvonne, aged 23, secured the first position after using 5 hours 33 minutes, to reach the wining point. She bagged home a trophy and a cash prize of three million Francs CFA.
This is the third conservative time Ngwaya Yvonne has championed the female category of the race; she first won in 2009, then in 2010 and now 2011
Minister Zoah  awarding prize to champion,Mbatcha
Gabsibuin Godlove and Lawan Ibrahim –came second and third respectively in the male category; Ngali Lisette and Tibep Patience (sister to Ngwaya Yvonne, who came first in female category) occupied the second and third positions respectively in the female category.
The second –position winners   in both categories each received a cash prize of two million francs, while those who came third in both categories each received one million francs.
There were also a junior category and relay race-competitions that had different prizes
A total of 600 athletes (577 Cameroonians and 33 foreigners) took part in the international race, whose budget this year witnessed a drop of 34 million. The race this year had a budget of 116 million francs as against 140 million in 2010.
The Minister of Sports and Physical Education, Michel Zoah and the President of Cameroon Athletic Federation, Jacques Sebastien Mbus co-chaired the prize-award ceremony at the Buea -Molyko   Stadium.
A day earlier at the Molyko Stadium during the 2011 Mt. Cameroon Race launching ceremony,
Mt Cameroon Race female champion(with trophy)
Minister Zoah said the Cameroon Government would continue to assist the Cameroon Athletic Federation in organizing the race of hope; but the minister strongly called on the private sector (companies) to come on board so to give the event the special attention it deserves.
He used the ceremony to announce that President is determined to improve on the sports facilities of the Southwest region, adding that a new stadium will soon be constructed in Limbe.
In his welcome speech, the mayor of Buea, Charles Mbella Moki, stressed the importance of the race, whose standards, many people say, are falling.
The Mayor appealed to the Cameroon Athletic Federation to endeavor “ to  institute a culture of good practice  and develop a sense of  organistion“,so that  henceforth the race can look like the Guinness Mt Cameroon Race of the past, which was highly popular and well-organized.

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