What you need to know:
- As Eldoret celebrates the NTV Berlin Marathon viewing party on Sunday, Eldoret’s Eka Hotel will officially launch an athlete’s "Wall of Fame,” an initiative that aims to celebrate the outstanding achievements of Kenya’s top athletes.
Kenya’s North Rift region boasts of a large percentage of world beaters who have dominated global athletics at the Olympic Games, World Championships, Commonwealth Games, World Cross Country Championships and big city marathons among other competitions.
However, some of these athletes have silently retired and disappeared, unnoticed, despite raising Kenya’s flag high internationally.
As Eldoret celebrates the NTV Berlin Marathon viewing party on Sunday, Eldoret’s Eka Hotel will officially launch an athlete’s "Wall of Fame,” an initiative that aims to celebrate the outstanding achievements of Kenya’s top athletes.
Eka Hotel has partnered with the Nation Media Group for NTV’s live broadcast of Sunday’s race, and are using the opportunity to launch the “Wall of Fame,” a collection of images of the top athletes mounted on a wall at the Rupa Mall-based hotel’s reception.
The launch will be attended by the German Ambassador to Kenya, Sebastian Groth, and his host, Uasin Gishu Governor Jonathan Bii.
“Eka Hotel Eldoret recognises the rich athletics heritage in the region which has produced numerous world-class athletes and has achieved exceptional success on the international stage.
“This initiative seeks to create a dedicated space within the hotel to honor and showcase the accomplishments of these athletes,” said Eka Hotel’s General Manager John Kanyi.
The primary objectives of the “Wall of Fame” is to celebrate athletics excellence and honour athlete’s remarkable achievements, to inspire young athletes by showcasing the stories and accomplishments of their sporting heroes and also to position Eldoret as a hub for athletics and sports tourism.
The hotel seeks to also launch interactive digital displays showcasing the biographies, achievements, and records of athletes from Eldoret and around the world and memorabilia and artifacts from renowned athletes, including medals, jerseys, shoes, and equipment.
The Wall of Fame for Athletics is a unique and exciting initiative that not only honors the illustrious athletics history of Eldoret but also has the potential to contribute significantly to the community and the tourism sector.
“We seek your support and partnership to bring this project to fruition and create a lasting legacy for Eldoret's athletic heritage. Together, we can celebrate excellence and inspire future generations of athletes,” added Kanyi.
Some of the athletes who are featured in the “Wall of Fame” are Kipchoge Keino, coach Patrick Sang, world marathon record holder Eliud Kipchoge, two-time Boston Marathon champion Moses Tanui, multiple Olympic and World 3,000m steeplechase champion Ezekiel Kemboi and pioneer of women’s athletics Tecla Chemwabai.
Two-time 1,500 metres Olympic champion Faith Kipyegon, world 3,000m steeplechase world record holder Beatrice Chepkoech, 2017 World Cross Country champion Irene Cheptai, Tokyo Marathon champion Rosemary Wanjiru, Leah Malot and world 800m record holder David Rudisha are some of the athletes honoured by the hotel.
The Eka Hotel’s management said that the project is just a drop in the ocean as they would love to bring on board all athletes who have made the country proud in the near future.
The project is being undertaken in conjunction with Nation Media Group’s Sports Desk.