More than 32,000 women and girls from different social backgrounds took to the streets of Rabat on Sunday (7) to take part in the 10th edition of the Women’s Race to Victory, an event organised by two-time world 400m hurdles champion Nezha Bidouane.
Organised under the patronage of King Mohammed VI, the 8km race brought together participants of all age groups from several countries. Morocco’s Hanane El Bajaoui won the race in 27:47 with Moroccan U20 1500m champion Meryem Boudaoud taking second place in 27:54 and Hanae Torchi placing third in 28:11.
But the focus of the race, as ever, was not on the competition aspect but rather the opportunity to educate women and girls about the importance of sport as a tool for social integration, contributing to the development of women's sport. Participants ran, walked or alternated between the two, depending on their ability.
“This competition has gained notoriety over the years,” said Bidouane, the 2000 Olympic bronze medallist. “It is now the benchmark for women’s road racing in Morocco."
Ever since the inaugural Women’s Race to Victory in 2005, thousands of women of all ages have taken part in this race in a festive atmosphere in one of the first gatherings of its kind in Morocco and the Arab-Muslim world.
Mohammed Benchrif for the IAAF