The Mount Mulanje Porters’ Race is ready to roll at Likhubula Valley in Mulanje tomorrow morning following reaffirmation of K6 million-sponsorship by main sponsors NBS Bank Limited.
A crowd of uncertainty hovered around the bank’s commitment to the extreme sporting event due to the coming in of partners Save the Children and Lake of Stars, whose roles in the annual race were not clarified.
“I can confirm that NBS Bank is back as the main sponsor of the race,” said NBS Bank’s marketing officer Lilian Kawaza yesterday. “We are committed and we promise to make the race more exciting.”
The 25-kilometre Porters’ Race is expected to set off at around 6am and will take a rocky and hazardous route around Mulanje Mountain. It has been taking place since 1996.
According to Andrew Adkins, whose body Tourist Association of Mount Mulanje (Tamm) is organising the event, there will be a clear demarcation on the role of NBS Bank as the main sponsors and duties of Save the Children and Lake of Stars as partners.
“NBS Bank will have rights to decorate the venue of the race with their banners and do everything that suit their status as main sponsors. Others will have erratic appearances.
“Nevertheless, Save the Children will be responsible for the children’s relay race dubbed ‘Race for Survival,’ which will follow the main contest on a safer and shorter route while Lake of Stars will come up with the ‘Island in the Sky’ concert, which will add flavor with performances by Bucci, Jacaranda School Band, the Floor Steppers and some Deejays,” he said.
The Porter’s Race, which attracts contestants from countries such as England, America and South Africa, is an extreme athletics contest that challenges athletes to cross the finish line within three hours.