Chelimo, Kipkoech stun loaded Baringo Half fields
Fukuoka Half runner-up Edith Chelimo prevailed over a strong field led by 2012 World Half Marathon bronze winner- Pascalia Chepkorir- to soar victory in the women’s race of the 2016 Lotto Foundation Baringo Half Marathon in Kabarnet on Saturday.
Isaac Kipkoech took a share of the honours when he motored to victory in the corresponding men’s race as both winners scooped Ksh200,000 (USD2000) each for beating the competition to submission along a twisting scenic course.
Koech prevailed over a potent cast that included Osaka 2007 IAAF World Championships marathon winner, Luke Kibet and seven-time IAAF World Cross runner, Hosea Mwok Macharinyang.
Chelimo breast the tape in 71:02 while Kipkoech stopped the timer at 62:51 to seal victory.
“Victory came as a surprise for me because I just came to participate. This is my first victory here although I have been a regular participant and I’m happy to have won,” Chelimo said post-race.
“I dedicate the win to my daughter Sherry Cheptoo, who turns two in two months time,” she added.
Lucy Cheruiyot (71:42) led the challengers’ home ahead of Birmingham World Half Marathon bronze winner; Chepkorir (71:55) who rounded the podium in the close battle for the finish.
Esther Chelang’a (73:04), Naomi Rotich (73:14) and Lydiard Orange (74:27) followed in that order to round the top-six.
In the men’s race, Kipkoech continued his sparkling domestic form after recently winning the Chemususu Half two months ago when he dropped second-placed Kirui Chesang (63:08) for the convincing win with Sammy Kurui placing third in 63:16.
“The victory has also inspired me after I dropped out of the Toronto Half Marathon in Canada last month,” pointed out Kipkoech.
Kennedy Rimengia (63:30) finished just outside the medals ahead of Macharinyang who clocked 63:37 for fifth with Kibet timing 63:44 in sixth.
Philemon Cheboi (64:08), Samuel Naibei (64:24), Shadrack Kiplagat (64:28) and Barnes Koskei (64:55) rounded off the top ten in that order.
The races started at Kabartonjo and took the athletes through sections of the cool Ossen Forest before finishing in Kabarnet Town.
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