World’s best primed for the nationals - Beaking Kenya News

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Wednesday, 10 February 2021

World’s best primed for the nationals


They say the Kenya Cross Country Championships is virtually a World Cross Country Championships but in name.

You will find the world’s best runners in this annual event and Saturday will be no different when the 2021 edition is held at Ngong Racecourse in Nairobi.

The hugely anticipated meet will bring together 16 teams from across the country with the squad members seeking selection to the Kenya team for the Africa Cross Country Championships that will be held in Lome, Togo on March 6 and 7. 

Different regions and the disciplined forces selected their best teams for the national trials and it will be indeed the crème de la crème of Kenyan long distance running on display at the racecourse on Saturday.

Sample this. National champion Sheila Chelangat will headline the 10km senior women’s after the Ras Al Khaimah (RAK) Half Marathon race that she intended to compete in on February 19 was cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Chelangat, who won the National Police Service Cross Country Championships title in Nairobi, has been training in Kericho.

“It will be a tough race because all the athletes have shifted their focus to the event since there is no other race to participate in at this time. I’m equally prepared and I will be looking forward to a good race and hopefully retaining my title,” said Chelangat.

Eyes will also be on the Kenya Prisons Service senior champions Rosemary Wanjiru and Charles Yosei.

Wanjiru who has been juggling her training between Eldoret and Iten is confident that she will carry the day come Saturday.

“I have been in the country for some time now and my main target is win,” Wanjiru threw down the gauntlet to her rivals loud and clear.

Yosei, who hails from Mt Elgon in Bungoma County, said he was well prepared after recovering from an injury that had kept him out of action for a while.

“I have been training really hard because I know I will be competing with some of the best athletes in the world,” said Yosei.

In-form Kibiwott Kandie, who is also the Kenya Defence Forces Cross Country champion will also be in the mix after the RAK meet was called off.

Race categories are 10km senior men and women, 8km under-20 men, 6km under-18 boys, 6km under-20 women, 5km under-18 girls and 8km mixed relay.

Nairobi Athletics Kenya Chairman Barnaba Korir, said preparations for the national championships are complete and they expect teams to start arriving in Nairobi from tomorrow.

All athletes under 20 years who will run on Saturday are expected to attend an anti-doping seminar in Nairobi.

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