Sierra Leone Sends Its First Marathoner To NYC

He wants to run 2:20 next month in the Big Apple.

The West African country of Sierra Leone is not famous for its elite distance runners, but that’s not stopping Idrissa Kargbo from dreaming big.

According to an article posted on the Voice of America’s website, the 22-year-old is hoping to better his current marathon PR of 2:35 at the ING New York City Marathon next month.

Optimally, he’d like to run 2:20 and says he’s honored to represent his country.

“I’m going to try to put my country international, to run a good time, so my people here can appreciate what I’m doing there,” he said. Kargbo has been a runner for 10 years. “I came from a poor family. I don’t have a job to get money.”

Australian ex-pat Jo Dunlop, who lives in Sierra Leone, discovered Kargbo and offered to sponsor him. Kargbo has since set his country’s record for the marathon (2:38) and thanks to $13,000 in donations, he will be heading to New York City.

For More: Voice of America

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