Toroitich, Kwamesa clinch Deaf Half Marathon titles


Peter Toroitich stretches into the finish line ahead of Simon Kibai at this year's edition ...
Peter Toroitich stretches into the finish line ahead of Simon Kibai at this year's edition of the Deaf Half Marathon. (PHOTO/Courtesy)

Pokot County’s Peter Toroitich stunned triple Deaflympics champion and world record holder in the 5,000m Simon Kibai Cherono to be crowned the winner of the fourth edition of the Deaf Half Marathon held at the Meru National Polytechnic on Sunday.

Toroitich clocked 1:11:02 edging out Kibai who came in second in a time of  1:11:24 as Daniel Kiptum sealed the podium finish in an impressive time of 1:12:18.

Toroitich who came in third in the last year’s edition held in Bomet County last year had steered a leading pack that included Kibai, Kiptum, David Njeru and Martin Gachie for the first 6km; a compelling cast to contend with.

During the race, Simon Kubai overtook Toroitich at the 10km mark but Toroitich was determined to dethrone the champion. He outsprinted the rest and at one point he was alone racing to the finish line.

“Today’s race was very important to me and I believe for the rest of the athletes here as it will help us to prepare for the National Deaflympic trials scheduled to take place later this month.

“I have hope that I will be selected to represent the country in the upcoming deaf champions next month,” Toroitich said in his post-race interview.

In the women’s 21km category, Juster Kwamesa romped to the finish line in a time of 1:46:33, followed by Timiria Barasa  clocking 1:98:22 and Deonida Okiago finishing in 2:02:17

The annual event also included the 10KM races for both men and women where Lucas Wanjiru won in the men’s category while Naibin Mushitoi won in the women category.

The event saw the winners in the half marathon walking away with Ksh.70,000, Ksh.60,000 and Ksh.55,000 respectively. The winner, first and second runners up in the 10KM race were awarded in  Ksh30,000, Ksh20,000 and Ksh10,000 respectively in cash prizes.

The race which is now in its fourth year also serves as platform opportunity to scout for athletes who will participate in the National Deaf Athletics Championships slated for May 23-24 in Uasin Gishu.

Telecommunications giant and title sponsor Safaricom returns to the race for the fourth year, matching last year’s Ksh.5 million sponsorship again this year.

As the race has gained more prominence within the DAAK calendar, Safaricom has gradually increased its sponsorship from the Ksh2 million support given in the race’s first year.

The Safaricom Deaf Half Marathon is the first of 11 races under the 2017 edition of Safaricom Athletics Series.

    MEN 21KM

  1. Peter Toroitich – 1:11:02
  2. Simon Kibai- 1:11:24
  3. Daniel Kiptum- 1:12:18
  4. David Njeru- 1:12:32
  5. Martin Gachie- 1:14:16
  6. Sora Dida- 1:19:31
  7. Kioko Musyoki- 1:23:47
  8. Lazaro Onyango- 1:30:06

 

WOMEN 21KM

  1. Juster Kwamesa- 1:46:33
  2. Timiria Barasa- 1:98:22
  3. Deonida Okiago- 2:02:17
  4. Mercy Tanui- 2:06:18
  5. Electine Aoko- 2:12:58

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