Top athletes are set to battle out for the second edition of Kaptagat Half marathon set for this Sunday in Kaptagat, Uasin Gishu County.
Race ambassador Geoffrey kipsang kamworor and director Patrick Birgen have called upon local athletes to take up the sport dubbed Sports For Conservation.
Kamworor, who will be competing at the Copenhagen Half marathon in two weeks time said that athletes should be competing in local races to build up their profile ahead of European races.
“I want to urge athletes to compete in these races as part of their training ahead of other championships. Such races will provide a good training ground and preparations for the big races out o there,” said kamworor, the three time world Half marathon champion.
He added that Kapgata race will not just be running but running for a course of conserving Kaptagat Forest, a major training ground for many North Rift based runners.
“The race has a good reason and that is why we have to run well. Am calling upon athletes to register in big numbers for the t-race,” said former New York marathon winner.
Birgen said the race will be reaching out to many locals who wants to run as well as conserve the forest which is too beneficial to them.
“We have to conserve the forest, which provides good training ground for our runners as well as wild animals. If we don’t protect the forest, wild animals will come out and destroy our produce and livestock,” said Birgen.
Last year, during the inauguration of the race, former world cross country junior bronze medalist Cynthia Jerop won the title in 71:30 ahead of former Nairobi standard chartered marathon champion Celestine Chepchirchir (72:68) and Joyce Chepchirchir (73:57) completing the podium.
Two time Toronto marathon winner Philemon Rono was the men’s winner in 62:23.6 beating David Kiprotich (63:11.7) and Wesley Kimutai was third timing 63:15.0.