Kuugongelwa wins Navachab half marathon

WINDHOEK: Namibian Defence Force (NDF) long-distance runner Uveni-Nawa Kuugongelwa overcame a challenge from his colleague Simon Shipingana to win the Navachab half marathon at Karibib on Saturday.

The race was the first of its kind to be hosted at the town, starting off at the Usab football field.

Kuugongelwa won the 21-kilometre (km) race in a time of one hour, nine minutes and 01 seconds (1:09.01). Johannes Naitembu came in second with a time of 1:09.05, and Thomas Rainhold was third with a time of 1:09.15.

In the women’s category, Alina Armas from the NDF came first with a time of 1:17.11; while Anna Amukoto took the second spot with a time of 1:19.32, and Helena Iipinge came in third on 1:21.13.

After the race, Kuugongelwa told Nampa the race was not easy as it was windy and the terrain was not as flat as they were told it would be.

“Simon gave me a challenge today, and that encouraged me to get better and improve my time.

The hills and wind also made it difficult to complete the race in a fast time, but I am very happy to have come here and remain unbeaten,” he said.

Armas thanked the sponsors for initiating the marathon as she said it allowed a lot of upcoming runners to test their long distance skills.

“I am very happy to have won this race. It is all down to hard work. Today the wind affected my running, but at the end of the day I still won in our category,” she said.

In the junior women’s category, Saara Martin came first followed by Sylvia Shivoye and Ndamonaghenda Kamulu.

Nghilyeendele Komeli won the junior men’s category, followed by Wapota Sakaria in second place and Yapwile Johannes in third place.

Sieglinde !Gontes won the veteran women’s category, with Laurencia Elago and Anna Somaebs coming second and third.

Salomo David won the veteran men’s category, with Christof Ndunga and Mathia Mutota in second and third place respectively.

Meanwhile, Elma Guriras was the only woman who completed the half marathon in the master women’s category.

In the master men’s category, George Mukuahima won while Manie Ross and Frans //Gaseb came second and third.

A total of 249 athletes took part in the Navachab half marathon.

Karibib businesses such as the Engen Service station, OK Groceries, First National Bank (FNB), Agra, Karibib Private School, Navachab Sports Club and Karibib Town Council sponsored the water points.

The Navachab Gold Mine last Tuesday announced a sponsorship worth N.dollars 45 000 towards the half marathon.

SOURCE: NAMPA

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