Runners during the start of the 2022 Tusker Lite Rwenzori Marathon in Kasese (Credit: Activate Uganda)

Overview:

As early as 4 AM, most people were awake and traversed through the rain drizzles to the start and finish venue of the 2022 Tusker Lite Rwenzori Marathon, Mariana - Stanley street

1st TuskerLite Rwenzori Marathon:

42 KM:

Men:

  • Winner: Allan Andiema (Uganda) – 2:31:49
  • 2nd: Sadic Bahati (Uganda) – 2:33:23
  • 3rd: Patrick Omara (Uganda) – 2:36:32

Women:

  • Winner: Isgah Cheruto (Kenya) – 2:50:58
  • 2nd: Harriet Agnes Amuron (Uganda) – 2:51:52
  • 3rd: Priscilla Chelangat (Uganda) – 2:54:42

21 KM:

Men:

  • Winner: Gilbert Kamutwire (Uganda) – 1:06:56
  • 2nd: Leonard Kiprop (Uganda) – 1:08:39
  • 3rd: Brian Adams Ategeka (Uganda) – 1:09:56

Women:

  • Winner: Annet Chesang (Uganda) – 1:21:29
  • 2nd: Evas Nasasira (Uganda) – 1:26:20
  • 3rd: Annet Chesang (Uganda) – 1:29:24

Saturday, September 3, 2022 will remain a momentous day in the history of the scenic Kasese municipality.

On the day, thousands of hundreds of runners converged in the usually low key town to participate in the Tusker Lite Rwenzori Marathon.

Not even the overnight rains that spread to the morning hours could restrict these passionate souls who engaged in the 42KM, 21KM and 5KM races.

Runners braved the early morning cold to participate in the 2022 Tusker Lite Rwenzori marathon

As early as 4 AM, most people were awake and traversed through the rain drizzles to the start and finish venue along Mariana – Stanley street.

Less worried of the soggy and extremely wet ground, the crowds converged for the limbering drills and the first set of 42 KM runners were flagged off officially minutes to 7 AM.

State Minister for Tourism Hon. Martin Mugarra Bahinduka was chief guest.

Other dignitaries included the UNDP Uganda Country Representative Elsie G Attafuah, Uganda Tourism Board (UTB) Chief Executive Officer Lilly Ajarova, area members of parliament, celebrated politician Winnie Kiiza (former woman MP, Kasese and leader of opposition in Parliament), Buganda Kingdom Prince David Wasajja, former Vision Group CEO Robert Kabushenga, Equator Heights director Amos Wekesa, among others.

Infact, Wassajja, Wekesa and Kabushenga ran in the different races to completion.

Participants including Prince David Wassajja show off their medals (Fourth from right)

Literally, by 7 AM, the entire Kasese town was coloured in green, the official running kit as the various runners flooded the streets right from the heart beat (CBD) through to Kilembe road, Chanjojo, Mburakasaka, Kasanga, Muzogoti, Kirembe, Portal Road, Rwenzori Road, Rukidi III and Kilembe, then back.

It took close to six hours for the whole place to clear up as the returning runners were hosted in the different hospitality tents for the sponsors and other resting confines.

21 KM runners before the 2022 Tusker Lite Rwenzori Marathon

Allan Andiema won the 42km men’s category on his marathon debut.

“The adventure was one of a kind, the terrain is magical and the slight drizzle in the morning greatly made it favorable for running and perhaps helped push me to my win,” an elated Andiema revealed moments after crossing the finishing line.

42 KM men marathon winner Allan Andiema receives his 5,000,000/= dummy cheque

The 23-year-old runner, attached to Uganda Wildlife Authority (UWA) clocked 2:31:51 to pocket the grand cash prize of UGX5M cash prize.

He was closed followed by Sadic Bahati with a time of 2:33:23.

Meanwhile, Patrick Omara came third with 2:36:35.

Kenya’s Isgah Cheruto clocked 2:51:01 to win the women 42 KM grueling race.

Also, the 2021 Dodoma Marathon, Cheruto beat off stiff competition from Uganda’s duo of Harriet Agnes Amuron (2:51:55) and Priscilla Chelengat (2:54:46) who settled for silver and bronze respectively.

21 KM:

Gilbert Kamutwire (1:06:56) took gold ahead of Leonard Kiprop (1:08:39) and Brian Adams Ategeka (1:09:56) for the men half marathon.

Women:

Annet Chesang returned the best time of 1:21:29 to win the ladies’ half marathon ahead of Evas Nasasira (1:26:20) and Annet Chesang (1:29:24).

The runners in the 5KM race

The marathon is part of the annual Rwenzori Theluji festival that had a number of activities cross-cutting as the Tourism Expo, Afforestation (Re-Greening Kasese), Kasese Carnival, Miss Tourism Rwenzori, Rwenzori Trade Investment Convention & Expo as well as the Round Table at the KTIF Grounds.

The Rwenzori Theluji festival officially comes to an end on Sunday, 4th September 2022 with the Round Table.

Uganda Breweries Limited (UBL) were the marathon lead sponsors through the Tusker Lite brand, having contributed Shs 800,000,000.

“We are proud of what we have accomplished here today and I thank the organizers who have contributed to the success of this event. I’m certain that this marathon is going to transform business in Kasese. Already the signs are evident,” UBL Marketing and Innovations Director, Emmy Hashakimana noted.

The partners were; UNDP, Rwenzori Mineral Water, Rocket Health, Health partner Rocket Health, Jumia, Standard Chartered Bank and United Nations Development Program (UNDP), among others.

The full roster of activities commenced on 1st September with the tourism expo and re-greening Kasese drives that both will climax on Sunday, 4th September 2022.

Rwenzori Trade Investment Convention & Expo will end on 4th September as well as the round table discussions.

The organizers promised that the second edition would be held in July 2023.

“We want to attract more people from across the world to run and also climb Mt. Rwenzori and the conditions to climb the Rwenzori ranges are more favorable in July,” Amos Wekesa noted.

David Isabirye is a senior staff writer for Kawowo Sports where he covers most of the major events.

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