US-based female and Jamaican male top Kingston City Marathon
A 50-year-old Finland-born, USA-based Mari Kauri, was the winner for the inaugural Kingston City Marathon last Sunday; while 25-year-old Jamaican Oshane Archibald, was the winner in the male category.
Archibald (2.52:42), Kemar Leslie (2.59.28) and Phillip McCatty (2.59.43) have earned qualifying times for the Boston Marathon due Monday, April 15 this year.
Completing the top three for the women are Arieta Martin (4.36.43) and Sonia Gayle (4.44:09), both Jamaicans.
The top-three men are all Jamaicans. McCatty, an Ardenne past student, lives in Canada and has represented Jamaica at a Commonwealth Games.
Co-chair, Nicola Madden-Greig, said, “It was the greatest feeling to be at the finish line to see our male marathon winner, Oshane Archibald from Jamaica, and female winner, Mari Kauri, from the USA cross the finish line. The dream of bringing back a marathon to Kingston was now completed and all the events ran smoothly.”
“I am truly proud of all our sponsors, officials, volunteers who worked to make this a great event for our runners. Kingston is on the map as a destination marathon city,” Madden-Greig added.
While, race director, Alan Beckford, was elated with the event from a technical standpoint.
“The first running of the marathon run as part of the Kingston City Run (KCR) CR was really an emotional experience seeing the wonderful competition with the top-four Men (Oshane Archibald, Kemar Leslie, Phillp McCatty and Henry Thomas) running together for over half way in the race give the spectators an exciting event to run. The first-timers like Tracey Tapper, Armand Sjak-Shie and Joy Buckle showed great determination to finish.”
Beckford thanked the volunteers and police making sure the runners were safe.
“This shows how we can really organise top marathons in Jamaica,” he said, “The live results with five timing points in the marathon allowing us to track where all runners were to better manage the event.”
The Jamaica Tourist Board, Tourism Enhancement Fund and the Jamaica Hotel and Tourist Association were the platinum partners for the 2019 renewal; while NIMA, SportsMax RJRGLEANER Group, Lifespan Water, KSAMC, Jamaica Moves, Events Entertainment Services and National Outdoor Advertising were major partners (gold sponsors).
Just over 400 volunteers, taken from colleges and universities from the Coporate Area, along with residents from across the island, offered their time to manage the event. Volunteer Coordinator, Prudence Simpson, said, “I am happy that the spirit of volunteerism is alive and well and from the meetings and sessions we have had, it is obvious people are still happy to share their time and talent to a worthy cause. It is one of the many positives about this event. This is our seventh year, and we continue to get great support from our volunteers.”
Men outnumbered women only in the marathon race. Thirty men and 10 women finished the race, while in the other sections, 1,087 women and 779 men finished the other events.
Beckford, while disappointed with the overall number for all races, was pleased with the entries for the marathon race.
“In the first year to have 40 participants is commendable and we hope to be able to top that number come March 15, 2020,” Beckford said.