Lewa Marathon is the only marathon in the world where spectators include wild animals. The start of 2008 Lewa Marathon had to be delayed by 15 minutes because a lion was sunning itself on part of the marathon circuit. The tight security team had to use a helicopter to evacuate the king of the jungle.
Elephants also came close to the route but the security team was swift to push them back. Sounds like a lot of fun! Just a note, since the marathon started no runner has been unfortunate victim of an hungry leopard or lion. Its a private Ranch and I bet the animals are well fed.
The winner of 2008 Lewa Safaricom marathon, Benson Kaptikou finished in a slow time of 2.21.39 to win a cash prize of US$2,000. He admitted he had sold his only goat for US$20 to raise bus fare to travel to the ranch.
“I have always believed that life is a gamble and that is why I did not have second thoughts about it” he said.
The marathon is held inside a wild life ranch located in Kenya on the slopes of Mt. Kenya. Its run on dirt roads 5,500 feet above sea level. Lewa Ranch offers a camp site with entertainment. The money raised from the marathon goes to wildlife conservation.
Feeling like running wild! Visit Lewa marathon official site to see how you can participate. Participation is limited to 750 runners.
If you are from North America and around the world you may also try the following site: http://www.tusk.org/safaricom-marathon-2009.asp