Diacore Marathon 2016 female winner Onneile Dintwe touched hearts with her speech when receiving her cheque from Stanbic Bank on Thursday. Dintwe won the race at a time of 01:17:31 while Rapula Diphoko won at 01:06:06 in the male category. Stanbic Bank gave them P5000 each and sport merchandise. Dintwe appreciated the prize money from Stanbic Bank, saying she lives off running; having only gone up to Form III in her studies. She said she has been an athlete from as early as the age of five because she liked running too much. It was in primary and junior schools that her talent was nurtured. She said knowing she was not academically gifted, she understood that she had to use the talent that God gave her to live off it.
Dintwe has under her belt eight national records, and remains determined more than ever to make sure that long distance runners like her are recognised. She said she will make sure some of her mates who quit after realising that they were getting nothing for their efforts return to the sport. “I am very proud of what I have been doing. I know that there is always a time for reward,” she said. Dintwe started taking part in the Diacore marathon in 2009. She has grown so much in the sport that she is also trying her hand at coaching. To show that she has what it takes her student (Diphoko) was on the podium with her having won the male category.
Diphoko appreciated Stanbic bank and his coach Dintwe for the contributions that they are making in his life. “My coach Onneile encourages me every day and she even encourages me to run the 42km marathon,” he said. Head of PR and Marketing for Diacore Marathon, Thabo Makgato said the athletes should be motivated to work even harder because they are planning on increasing the prize money next year. “For us to see Botswana athletes running highly competitive times and competing at an international level right here on our home soil is the realisation of everything that we aspired to at the conception of the Diacore Gaborone Marathon,” he said. He applauded Stanbic for being part of the marathon and having had over 300 members participating in the race.
Head of Corporate and Investment Banking at the bank Sheperd Aisam said they will continue to recognise the wealth of local talent in the athletic space and celebrate local athletes. “What we as a community need to do is to ensure that every possible talent is given the opportunity to thrive in this way,” he said.