November 23 2017Over 40,000 participants are expected to take part in the 17th edition of the Great Ethiopian Run 10km which takes place in Meskel Square this Sunday. A wave start will again be in operation to accommodate these numbers, the biggest ever for a road race in Africa. The successful introduction of a wave start and a new course route on wider roads in last year’s race has led organisers to believe that numbers could even go beyond 50,000 in the coming years.
Over the past week scores of international participants from more than twenty countries have been arriving in Addis Ababa for the race. Among them is a big delegation from China, including members of the Chinese Athletics Federation and Beijing Marathon Organising Committee. Seventy-four participants from the Irish charity ORBIS are also taking part, as are several other European runners supporting charity work in Ethiopia.
2016 Olympic 5,000m champion Vivian Cheruyiot from Kenya and former world half-marathon champion Lornah Kiplagat of Holland are among the well-known international names attending this year’s race.
The final pre-race press conference takes place at the Hilton Addis Ababa at 11am on Friday 24th November. Final details about the race will be given at this meeting.
The children’s run will kick start the weekend’s action with more than 3,000 children competing in the children’s races at the Addis Ababa Youth Sport Academy opposite Imperial Hotel.
Great Ethiopian Run is also staging a post-race concert in Unity Park of Ghion Hotel on the afternoon immediately following the run where well-known reggae musicians including Jamaican star Luciano will be performing. More than 8,000 spectators are expected at this event which is open to the public.