Chebet, Kipkorir win Ndalat Cross Country
Former World Youth silver medallist Sandra Chebet Cherono and Nicholas Kipkorir are the 2017 winners of the Isaiah Kiplagat Memorial Ndalat Cross Country senior titles.
Chebet obliterated the field in her first attempt at the senior women’s rank, clocking 28:07.6minutes ahead of Eve Cherono (28:31.0) and Pascalia Jepkorir.
The Londiani-based athlete clinched the Kericho 10km road race last Saturday and still had the legs to tear apart a stacked field that had the 2017 IAAF World Cross Country bronze medallist Lillian Kasait.
In the men’s race, Kipkorir who trains in Kaptagat timed his burst to perfection as a close contest culminated in a thrilling final lap.
With three laps to go, the men’s race had a leading pack of close to seven with another debutant over the senior rank, Noah Kipkemboi a comfortable five steps ahead.
Kipkemboi who ended up second in (31.10.0) had been lurking behind at halfway as the race progressed into the halfway mark before making a bold move to surge ahead and take charge from the front.
His move saw the file behind him unfold into a longer thread as Kipkorir, Sammy Kirui (sixth), Emmanuel Bor and Bernard Kipkemei quickly tracked his step.
The 23-year-old emerged from the corner for the penultimate round still leading but Kipkorir had narrowed his advantage while Bor and Kipkemei followed a few steps back.
Kipkorir who declared the Africa Cross Country as his next battle frontier had the stronger kick so he went for the kill, cutting the leader’s advantage before assuming the lead himself as they worked up the last hill of the meandering course.
In the 8km Junior Men’s race, Phoenix Kipruto (24:34.9), Vincent Kiprotich (24:35.6) and Edward Zakayo (24:39.3) claimed the top podium positions.
Mariam Cherop (21:23.7) Beatrice Chebet (21.27.0) and Agnes Ngenyi (21.29.0) clinched the first, second and third positions respectively.
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