The Kenya Tourism Board (KTB) is working on long term collaboration with athletes to position Kenya as a preferred destination.
KTB Chief Executive Officer Dr Betty Radier says athletes have continued to positively profile the country with their sterling performances in international competitions.
“Even at these times of less travel globally as a result of Covid-19 pandemic, Kenya continues to be top of mind among travellers and investors alike because of our athletes who excel in international competitions,” said Radier.
The CEO was speaking at KTB offices as she flagged off Kenya’s 2020 London Marathon podium finishers for a five-day-long familiarisation holiday to key attraction sites in the country.
Current marathon world record holder Brigid Kosgei who won 2020 London Marathon and her colleague Ruth Chepngetich who finished 3rd in the London marathon have been accorded a five-day tour of tourism attractions in Laikipia, Samburu and Lamu.
“As the body mandated with the task of marketing Kenya’s tourism products and experiences, we recognize the huge profile that our athletic stars occupy on the world stage. We believe that it is time to involve our athletes in making a pitch for the country as the best destination for investments and tourism,” said Radier.
Radier says that despite the challenging year, athletes managed to register strong performances in the London Marathon which has been the only major marathon event to take place this year.
“This year has been really difficult for everyone be it in sports or business due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Many local and international events had to be cancelled, which deprived them of the opportunity to do what they do best. Nonetheless, and thankfully, the London Marathon took place, and we were well represented as usual. For that, we remain grateful for our sportsmen and women,” she added.
As part of its commitment to leveraging on marathoners, KTB this year signed up Marathon World champion Eliud Kipchoge as Magical Kenya brand ambassador. KTB’s mission is to inspire the world to visit Kenya through the effective strategic marketing of Kenya’s tourism products while enriching the lives of Kenyans and visitors alike.
The annual London Marathon is part of the Marathon Majors that have over the years played a key role in profiling Kenya as the home of champions.
Kenyan marathoners have dominated the competition over the past decade with Eliud Kipchoge winning the competition on four occasions including the 2018 and 2019 editions.