Dubois (AUS) wins the worlds richest mountain race.
World Trophy internationals take a larg share of the $100,000 prize money.
Obudu, Nigeria – Ben Dubois of Australia won the first-ever mountain running race held in Nigeria on Sunday 27th November.
Dubois covered the 11Km course, which climbed 800m to the summit of Mt. Obudu in Cross River State, in 48:44 to claim the $50,000 first place prize, the richest award in mountain running.
The fast starting local runners, relatively inexperienced in mountain running, were soon being overhauled by the World Trophy internationals invited to compete. By the half way point, Dubois and Robert Krupicka (CZE) had only Nigerian Danjuma Kopkuddi as company. Krupicka later faded, to leave the remaining pair to battle it out over the final 3Km. Without having to increase his pace, Dubois slowly drew ahead to win by 12 seconds. Kopkuddi was second, winning $20,000, with Krupicka more than 30 seconds adrift, in third ($10,000)
The two invited Italian runners also finished amongst the prize winners, with Alberto Mosca, who represented Italy in the Junior World Trophy some years ago, fourth ($5,000) and former World silver medalist, Emmanuel Manzi, sixth ($2000)
Dope testing was carried out on all prize winners.
The Governor of Cross River state, His Excellency Donald Duke, was delighted with this WMRA associate member race and announced that he would be sponsoring Kokuddi and Danjumba Gyang, who finished fifth, to run in the 2006 World Mountain Running Trophy, which is being staged in Turkey next September.
Anna Pichrtova (CZE) was a comfortable winner in the women’s race over the same distance, to take the $1500 first place prize.
A field of 350 athletes, mostly Nigerians, took part.
1. Ben du Bois (AUS) 48:44
2. Danjuma Kopkuddi (NIG) 48:56
3. Robert Krupicka (CZE) 49:27
4. Alberto Mosca (ITA) 50:49
5. Danjuma Gyang (NIG) 51:03
6. Emmanuel Manzi (ITA) 51:48
1. Anna Pichrtova (CZE) 55:46