Eyeing greater success, Kirui plans early Boston Marathon preps


Geoffrey Kirui wins in Boston (PHOTO/IAAF/Victah Sailer)
Geoffrey Kirui wins in Boston (PHOTO/IAAF/Victah Sailer)

World Marathon champion Geoffrey Kirui says he cannot afford the luxury of suffering festive season hangovers as he begins preparations for his Bolton title defence on April 16.

The 24-year-old enjoyed a record breaking season that saw him become only the first man to win in Boston and at the IAAF World Championships in the same year and says early preps are meant to ensure there is no let up in 2018.

“I had a very good season last year. I started by preparing for major races which turned out very successful; it was fantastic.

“I have to start early following the same programme I used at the beginning of last year’s season. How I start my season will determine a lot of things so I have to work hard and smarter,” Kirui told Citizen Digital.

Kirui says he feels no pressure going to the race as a World champion but admits that Rio Olympics bronze medalist and Chicago Marathon title holder Galen Rupp will pose a tough challenge this term after edging him by near the nearest of margins last year.

Rupp, the home favourite finished 21seconds behind Kirui in 2 hours, 9minutes and 58 seconds (2:09.58) as Suguru Osako settled for third podium place in 2:10.28.

Rupp will not be Kirui’s only headache, as he will also be on the look out for Kenyan-born American Shadrack Biwott as well as Dathan Ritzenhein, the third fastest US marathoner of all time with a 2:07:47 personal best.

Abdi Abdirahman, who was sixth in Boston this year and seventh in New York should also give him some food for thought.

After Kirui’s expolits in Boston and London, the 2011 Africa Junior Championships 10,000m gold medallist, was invited to the lucrative New Dheli half marathon, India where he finished sixth in 1:00.04.

Birhanu Legese (59:46) was unstoppable then as he recalimed his 2015 title in a tight finish ahead of countryman Andamlak Belihu (59:51) and Kenyan born American runner Leonard Korir (59:52).

“New Delhi was great although I was not aware that I would compete in that race. I had taken a two months’ break after the London Championships. The moment I was told that I’m one of the invites I started preparing but by the time I only had a few weeks left.

“I had a good run until the last few kilometres where my kick failed me and I was not able to match my time from the previous race.”

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