Karoki defends his Discovery Kenya 10k title

By emmanuel sabuni
Jan 29, 2017
  • Bidan Karoki on his way to win the Discovery Cross country 10km race at the Eldoret Sports ground on Sunday.(Photo by Emmanuel Sabuni)

Reigning world cross country silver medallist Bedan Karoki speedily defended his Discovery Kenya Cross country title 10km title in 29:54.2 on Sunday at the Eldoret Sports club ground.

The race which served as a perfect home buildup for his debut marathon run in London saw Karoki drop off Doha half marathon champion Alex Kibet who had stuck with him after his break off with 4km remaining to win the race organized by his training camp manager Rosa Associati.

He easily jogged away from the packed field that had Kenya Defence Forces cross country champion Emmanuel Kipsang who led a spirited charge.

The race was reduced to a two horse race leaving the world half marathon silver medallist and Kipsang at around the 6km mark.

But there was no stopping Karoki who managed to hold on for a perfect defence of his title, as he heads off to Ras Al Khaimah (RAK) half marathon next week to gauge his speed. “I want to run well in RAK before heading to London.

Half marathon is a good training especially on speed work before the main marathon,” said Karoki who has shifted his training base to Kaptagat from Japan, keen on a strong 42 km debut in April.

Reigning Doha half marathon champion Alex Kibet came in second place as he eyes a national ticket to the world cross country championships in Kampala, Uganda.

He crossed the finish line in 30:05.4 followed closely by renown pace setter Geoffrey Kipyego who rounded off the podium positions timing 30:06.8.

The favourites fell in quick succession in the women’s 8km race. Reigning Paris marathon champion Visiline Jepkesho, world marathon silver medallist Helah Kiprop, reigning All Africa Games 10,000m silver medallist Gladys Chesir , Barcelona marathon champion Valary Jemeli all lost to 2008 world Junior Champion Irene Chebet Cheptai. Cheptai, running shoulder to should with world junior 3,000m champion Lilian Kasait was delighted with her victory but was clearly concerned by her misperformance in the senior races.

“I have found it difficult to win in senior races because of its competitive nature but I want to make to world cross country championships to redeem my lost glory,” said Cheptai who cut the tape in 26:28.9. Kasait, a form two student at Saramek Secondary school finished second timing 26:34.2 with Bahraini Eunice Chebichii third in 27:13.3.

Little known Lucy Cheruiyot was fourth in 27:18.4 followed by Chesir (27:23.6) while Vivian Kiplagat (27:27.2), who the previous day had won North Rift region Cross country sixth.

SChebet Ng’etich ruined the hoped siblings sweep for sisters Sandra and Emily Chebet. Sandra defended her  8km under 20 title in 20:42.1 as Ng’etich came second in 21:09. with Emily rounding up the podium in 21:19.1. “

My focus and my sisters’ too is to run at world cross country championships. I know she has not been doing well recently but we want to compete together at the world event,” said Sandra.

Recently graduated from high school, world Youth 3,000m champion Richard Kimunyan won the 8km Under 20 title as he warms up to move to the senior ranks on track. He won in 23:53.5 followed by Josephat Kipchirchir in second position timing 24:01.7 and Antony Saita was third in 24:14.1.

Selected results 10km senior men 1.Bedan Karoki 29:54.2 2. Alex Kibet 30:05.4 3.Geoffrey Kipyego-30:06.8 4. Bernard Kipkemboi-30:08.5 5. Timothy Rono-30:10.4 6. Noah Kipkemboi 30:14.2 7. Peter Kipkemei 30:16.3 8.Kenku Koi 30:20.2 9.Emmanuel Kipchirchir 30:21.7 10.Simon Kimuti 30:23.0

8km senior women 1.Irene Jebet Cheptai 26:28.9 2.Lilain Kasait 26:34.2 3. Eunice Chebichii 27:13.3 4. Lucy Cheruiyot 27:18.4 5.Gladys Chesir 27:23.6 6.Vivian Kiplagat 27:27.2 7. Eunice Chemunung-27:42.4 8.Valary Jemeli 27:50.4 9.Visiline Jepkesho 27:53.5 10.Helah Kiprop 28:08.9

6km under 20 1.Sandra Chebet 20:42.1 2.Chebet Ng’etich 21:09.9 3.Emily Chebet 21:19.1 4.Purity Ng’ang’a 21:38.4 5.Daisy Cherotich 21:41.7 6.Gloria Kite 21:43.7 7.Ednah Cherotich 21:45.7 8.Abigael Chelangat21:49.3 9.Beatrice Jebet 21:50.7 10.Sheila Chebiwott 21:54.1

8km under 20 1. Richard Kimunyan-23:53.5 2.Josephat Kipchirchir-24:01.7 3. Antony Saita- 24:14.1 4.Collins Kemboi 24:29.7 5. Cleophas Kanie 24:33.4 6.Boniface Kiptarus24:40.0 7. Alex Kibet 24:42.4 8.Titus Kibet 24:46.6 9. Stephen Chesang 24:47.4 10.Edwin Kipkemei 24:47.9