Inhabitants of the South West Regional Capital, Buea are already basking in the euphoria of the 2018 edition of the Mount Cameroon Race of Hope.
The race, which will take place tomorrow, Saturday, February 17, 2018 will bring together athletes from within and without Cameroon.
Speaking to reporters in Buea ahead of tomorrow’s event, the President of the South West Athletics Federation, Andrew Eteki, said the Region is more than ready to host both the local and international athletes.
“We are more than ready to host tomorrow’s event. Most of the things are in place and every disposition has been taken to make up for the remaining things. But like I said, we are ready to welcome both the local and international athletes to this historic event,” Eteki asserted.
In a recent meeting chaired by the Secretary General at the South West Governor’s Office, Lawrence Nwafua, the various committees were urged to take their jobs seriously and to make sure that the event is given the grandeur it deserves.
However, despite the disposition taken by those in charge of organising the 23rd edition of the race, this year’s event will take place without some iconic athletes who have challenged the Chariot of the gods over the years.
Amongst the iconic athletes that will be absent in this year’s race is Eric Mbatcha. The 2011 and 2014 winner of the race will not take in this year’s event for personal reasons.
Another athlete who will not grace this year’s event is Godlove Gabsibuin. The three times champion; 2012, 2013 and 2015, has been sidelined by a knee injury.
Again, Simplice Ndungueh, who won the race in 2016, will not take part in this year’s race.
Samuel Essombe, son of the legendary Queen of the Mountain, Sarah Liengu Etonge, will also not brave the Chariot of the gods after he was shot by armed robbers some months back.
Meanwhile, the population is anxiously waiting for Mike Short, a British, who won the Mount Cameroon Race of Hope in 1984 and 1985 to grace the event.
It should be stressed here that this year, a total of 485 athletes from 11 countries including Cameroon will be challenging the Chariot of the gods