Standard Chartered Bank on Saturday unveiled the 20th edition of the Standard Chartered Nairobi Marathon in an event attended by more than 200 guests at Uhuru Gardens, Nairobi.

This year’s edition is themed “20 years of running,” and Stanchart says it marks 20 years of its pledge to deliver the best IAAF-accredited global mass participation sporting event.

The event seeks to give elite athletes a platform to launch their international careers, spur economic development, promote a fitness culture and positively impact the environment.

Standard Chartered Head of Corporate Affairs, Brand and Marketing Joyce Kibe promised this year’s edition will provide runners, partners and sponsors an experience like no other.

“We are proud to once again bring you a marathon that promotes talent. Many young athletes in Kenya rely on our IAAF-approved international marathon to jumpstart their sporting careers and improve their livelihoods,” said Kibe.

She added that this year, the physical Standard Chartered Nairobi Marathon will be held on Sunday, October 29, 2023 on the Southern Bypass with Uhuru Gardens as the main venue.

The satellite marathons outside Nairobi County will be held in Kisumu, Mombasa, and Eldoret and are scheduled to kick off from October 22-29, 2023.

“The event will feature all the six race categories: 42km male and female, 21km male and female, 10km male and female, 21km wheelchair male and female, 5km Family Fun Run race and the Corporate Relay Challenge,” Kibe revealed.

She added: “This year’s target is to have 25,000 runners participate in the physical marathon. With this launch, the registration portal is officially open on until 15th October 2023.”

Standard Chartered has set the registration fee for this year’s Nairobi Marathon at Sh2,000 and late registration entry fee will be Sh2,500, after October 10, 2023.

The total registration fees collected will fund the Standard Chartered Futuremakers programmes that enable future generations to learn, earn and grow.

The 2022 Nairobi Marathon saw a record Sh37 million raised for the FutureMakers initiative, with Sh311 million invested in it since 2019 and a total of 24,000 youth being beneficiaries.

Standard Chartered Kenya and East Africa CEO Kariuki Ngari indicated that the marathon aims at promoting sustainability, including planting trees, as envisioned in its 2021 report.

“In 2022, over 20,000 runners registered to participate in the Nairobi Marathon, and we distributed over 25,000 seedlings in various parts of the country alongside other environmental protections measures,” stated Ngari.

He added, “This year we aim to continue minimising the negative impacts of our operations and drive positive change through planting tree seedlings in partnership with various stakeholders and at all touchpoints.”

This year’s marathon will see the return of an executive category of 10km CEO Challenge with a training program initiated to help those taking part and also promote tree-planting.

Nairobi Deputy Governor James Njoroge Muchiri lauded Standard Chartered for its sponsorship and consistency in hosting the prestigious event in Kenya’s capital Nairobi.

“This marathon serves as a testament to Kenya's status as a global hub for sports and showcases our commitment to promoting a healthy and active lifestyle among our citizens.

“The Marathon also not only promotes and celebrates athletic excellence but also brings economic benefits to our city, as it positions the city as a premier destination for sports events as well as attracts participants, spectators and international attention.”

Nairobi Marathon Head of Registration Catherine Gitau, Nairobi Deputy Governor James Njoroge Muchiri and Standard Chartered Bank – Kenya CEO Kariuki Ngari.  PHOTO/STANCHART

On his part, Athletics Kenya Chairman Jackson Tuwei lauded StanChart for dependably and sustainably promoting a sporting culture in Kenya.

“I applaud Standard Chartered for consistently organising this sustainable marathon for two centuries and in so doing cultivating a sporting culture within Kenya, inspiring young athletes to pursue their dreams and showcasing our nation's extraordinary running talent,” Tuwei stated.

He added: “The Nairobi Marathon brings together athletes from diverse backgrounds, races, gender and promotes inclusivity with its PWD race category. This inadvertently fosters a love for athletics and nurtures talent from grassroot levels.”

The event will also work with the Anti-Doping Agency of Kenya (ADAK) to reduce irregularities, maintain IAAF standards as well as the integrity of its 20th edition marathon.