Fake marathoner kisses cash bye after officials bust him

The annual Standard Chartered Nairobi Marathon has always lived up to its tradition of producing new talent with little known athletes winning every year.
The race has not only changed lives for the over 10,000 children who have regained their eyesight since its inception in 2003, but also turned most winners into instant millionaires.
Most athletes have used the race as a stepping stone to big marathons while some have had to tell about their rags to riches story after winning.
In the race, having the highest prize in the country, winners in men and women’s full marathon pocket $14,800 (Sh1.5 million) each.
While most athletes will go through hard work and determination to win, some will always devise ways of trying to win without breaking a sweat through cheating.
And this is not through doping, but by joining contestants almost before the end of the race.
The media
One of such cases happened on October 25 when one Julius Njogu from Naivasha (about 90km west of Nairobi) sneaked into the race with only 5km to go, to finish second before he was busted through the help of the media.
Kaptagat’s Joshua Kipkorir crossed the finishing line triumphantly in 2:13:25 for the prize of $14,800.
Njogu came in second in 2:14:10 to be in line for the second prize of $6,400 (Sh650,000) followed by Hillary Kiplimo in 2:14:18.
One of the race directors, Ibrahim Hussein, swung to action to confirm from photos and videos taken during the final moments of the race.
“He was simply nowhere in the picture as we entered the last five kilometres,” said Hussein, who summoned security officers to arrest Njogu.
“We shall bring charges against him.”
When asked where he trains and his coach, Njogu, who is in his early 30s said: “I just train on the hills and I have no coach. I just followed the designated route. I have done nothing wrong.”
Moment of glory
Hussein said Njogu wore training shoes instead of running shoes, hence he could not have really survived the full marathon.
“We still could have caught him through the running chip. He could not have escaped since all the athletes are monitored electronically through out the distance,” said Hussein.
It’s not the first time race imposters are nabbed.
In 2013, a Kenya Air Force officer Winfridah Kwamboka was almost denied her moment of glory when an intruder Selina Ariongonyang cheated her way to victory.
Ariongonyany, who had entered the race midway, cashed on the disorganisation at the finishing area to take the women’s full marathon tag, only for the real winners to enter the grounds.
Interestingly, Ariongonyany pretended to collapse at the finishing line just like Njogu, who pretended to be exhausted, dousing himself in water.
The athlete from West Pokot was at pains to explain how she won the race, her physical condition not reflecting a person who had covered 42km.
More cheating rocked the women’s 10km race during the 2013 event with the genuine first runner-up and second runner-up being locked out by some athletes, who allegedly joined the race midway.