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More than 10,000 people take part in first full-length Riyadh Marathon

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More than 10,000 people from Saudi Arabia and around the world took part in the Riyadh Marathon on Saturday, according to the Saudi Press Agency (SPA).

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It was the first official full marathon to be held in the Kingdom, according to the official website, and was organized by the Saudi Sports for All Federation. A half marathon was held in 2018.

The 42-kilometer race began at King Saud University at 6.15 a.m. and passed through the historic district of Diriyah, before runners made their way down Prince Mohammed bin Salman Road, and through the King Abdullah Financial center before returning to the university.

Saudi runners made up 57 percent of those participating, although athletes from Ethiopia took first place in both the men’s and women’s professional categories.

Tadese Tsegaye Getachew won first place in the men’s professional category, while Nare Tadu Teshome took gold in the women’s professional category.

In the general category, Saudi Ali Al-Shahrani won third place, while the Kenyan Michael Kimtai took second and Kenyan Bernard Chiruiyot won first.

Prize money worth $500,000 (two million riyals) was given to race winners.

“We are happy today to launch the Riyadh Marathon 2022,” said Prince Abdulaziz bin Turki al-Saud, Minister of Sport, in a statement published on the Riyadh Marathon website.

“Through the continuous and unlimited support from our leadership His Majesty Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques and His Royal Highness the Crown Prince, Saudi Arabia has been able to become one of the world's leading sport destinations,” Prince Abdulaziz added.

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