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Star-Studded Lineup Of Elite Athletes Revealed For The Ras Al Khaimah Half Marathon 2023 (16 February 2023)

The upcoming race will see an elite field of 28 world-class athletes compete for the top spot

At a press conference on Marjan Island, Ras Al Khaimah Tourism Development Authority today welcomed six elite athletes set to compete in the 2023 Ras Al Khaimah Half Marathon on Saturday, 18 February.

Hosted less than 48 hours ahead of the highly anticipated race, the press conference was led by Iyad Rasbey, Executive Director, Destination Tourism Development & MICE at Ras Al Khaimah Tourism Development Authority, Kaarina Pagil, Vice President at Under Armour, Luca Onofrio, Head of Mass Events at RCS Sports and Events, along with world-class athletes including Seifu Tura, Daniel Mateiko, Kennedy Kimutai, Hellen Obiri, Brigid Jepchirchir Kosgei, and Gotytom Gebreslase.

Duringthe press conference, it was revealed that the 16th edition of the Gold Label race in Ras Al Khaimah will see 28 of the top-ranking runners across the globe, for a chance to top the course records and take home a piece of the AED 1,219,000 prize fund.

Speaking on the exceptional lineup for the upcoming race, Iyad Rasbey, Executive Director, Destination Tourism Development & MICE at Ras Al Khaimah Tourism Development Authority, said, “We are thrilled to welcome all elite athletes and running enthusiasts alike to our nature emirate for the 16th edition of the Ras Al Khaimah Half Marathon. With the incredible legacy of the ‘World’s Fastest Half Marathon’, we look forward to setting new records on our amazing course and further cementing our position as a destination for community led sporting events, both on the regional and global stage”.

Following Iyad Rasbey’s speech , Luca Onofrio, Head of Mass Events at RCS Sports and Events added, “The preparations are all set to provide an incredible experience for participants of all levels: from elite runners to participants in the various distances. We wish all of the participants, both local and international visitors, a good stay in Marjan Island and a successful day.” 

Perhaps the biggest supporter of the Ras Al Khaimah Half-Marathon, the event’s Official Technical Sponsor, Under Armour, has worked tirelessly to ensure an enhanced race-day experience for all of its registered participants. “Under Armour was honoured to be this year’s Technical Sponsor, and so we’ve made it our mission to elevate the experience for everyone to enjoy,” said Kaarina Pagil, Vice President of Under Armour.  “It’s not just the fastest half marathon in the world, it’s one of the greatest running communities in the world, a race that brings people from all nations together, and Under Armour is so proud to be a part of that.”  

Male Elite Athletes:

The elite field at the upcoming race is set to see male athletes Seifu Tura, Daniel Mateiko, and Kennedy Kimutai, all returning to Ras Al Khaimah to compete for the winning prize and beat their performances in last year’s edition.

With a personal best time of 58:36, Ethiopian star Seifu Tura swooped the fourth position in last year’s race and holds the accolade as the winner of the Chicago Marathon 2021. Adding to the fierce competition, Kenyan Daniel Mateiko, with a personal best time of 58:26 set at the Valencia Half Marathon 2021, secured sixth place at the Ras Al Khaimah Half Marathon 2022, among other leading titles under his belt. Also hailing from Kenya, Kennedy Kimutai will be participating in the upcoming race for the second consecutive year as he aims to top his previous performance and beat his personal best time of 58:28.

Female Elite Athletes:

Meanwhile,adding to the impressive line-up of world-class runners, the female elite category will feature   Hellen Obiri, Brigid Jepchirchir Kosgei, and Gotytom Gebreslase at the start line on Saturday.

Kenya’s Brigid Jepchirchir Kosgei holds a personal best time of 64:28 and previously placed second in the Ras Al Khaimah Half Marathon 2020.Among her extensive accomplishments, she is also the world record holder at the Chicago Marathon 2019  and a silver medalist at the Tokyo Olympics 2020.

Ethiopia’s Gotytom Gebreslase is the World Marathon Champion of Oregon 2022 with a personal best time of 65:36 and a marathon personal best time of 2:18:11. She is also the winner of the Berlin Marathon 2021, making her a World Marathon Majors winner.

Joining both excellent runners is Hellen Obiri of Kenya, who has a half marathon personal best of 64:22, is a two-time 5,000-metre Olympic silver medalist –  secured in Rio de Janeiro 2016 and Tokyo 2020 – andalso entered the Ras Al Khaimah Half Marathon 2022, placing second in a competitive field.

Commenting on the upcoming race, Hellen Obiri said: “I am excited to kick off my competitive season by once again participating in this amazing half marathon on Saturday. I have been training hard for the race in order to put my best foot forward, and if the weather permits, I hope to set a new course record and go home as the new champion.”

Speaking on his aspirations for the race, Daniel Mateiko added: “First of all, I would like to thank the race organizers for inviting me back for another opportunity to set a better record. Last year, I ran this course and finished with a good time; however, I’m aiming to secure higher results and potentially break a course record. With such a fast and flat course, I believe anything is possible.”

One of the most anticipated landmark events on the Ras Al Khaimah calendar, the 2023 Ras Al Khaimah Half Marathon is set to be an unmissable, action-packed day, complete with fierce competition and a host of family-friendly activities for all to enjoy.

Taking place on Marjan Island, the Emirate’s coral-shaped destination home to majestic white sandy beaches and a plethora of world-class hotels and resorts, the vibrant race village will open its doors on race day, from 5:30 am until 1:00 pm, offering exciting and interactive experiences for participants along the fantastic, fast race course and for family and spectators alike. 

Organised by Ras Al Khaimah Tourism Development Authority (RAKTDA) and RCS Sports and Events, the Ras Al Khaimah Half Marathon attracts thousands of elite and amateur runners from the UAE and internationally, with the upcoming edition on Saturday expected to set a new recordwith over 5,300runners registered to participateacross thehalf marathon, half marathon relay, 5 KM, and 1 Mile racecategories. 

For more informationand the full list of elite athletes confirmed, please visit


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