500 Athletes Set For JM Busha 54 Races
By Don Makanyanga
Harare, March 21, 2017 - AT least 500 athletes are expected to take to the track and field when the finals of the JM Busha 54 races events take place at the National Sports Stadium in Harare May 25.
In an interview with RadioVop, National Athletics Association of Zimbabwe President (Naaz) Tendai Tagara said the participants were drawn from two qualifying races which were held in the capital and Bulawayo in February and March respectively.
“We are expecting a field of 500 athletes on the finals after we successfully held the qualifying races in Harare and Bulawayo recently and we are very pleased with the level of competitiveness we witnessed during the two qualifying legs,” said the Naaz boss.
He said his association was still to come up the final participants of the much anticipated marathon.
“The Secretary General is dealing with the final field of participants which shall be based on position and time posted in both legs of the qualifiers and we are looking ahead to an historic event on the 25th of May.”
Tagara said the sponsorship of the track and field event by JM Busha had come at the right time when his association was starting to prepare for the forthcoming Olympics which are set to be held in Tokyo Japan in 2020.
“The sponsorship came at a right time when we were starting the new Olympic circle and it will go a long way in preparing for the global event and we are elated to have partnered JM Busha at such a point,” said Tagara.
JM Busha country representative Vimbai Zinyama concurred with the Naaz boss but said the door had not been shut as yet on those that failed to make the grade in the two qualifying races.
“At the moment those that will have attended the series must complete their round so that the best in them could be seen among them, any challengers can be considered late in an open trial and we will call for participants and confirm with Naaz,” said Zinyama.
JM Busha 54 is a series of races that shall be held on May 25 across the African continent with the winners in different countries expected to converge in the capital for the final race.
JM Busha availed more than $300 000 for the Zimbabwe edition of the JM Busha Busha 54 races.