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Mary Keitany: Embrace cross country as Mumberes X-country is launched

World women’s only marathon record holder Mary Keitany has urged race organisers to stage more cross country races to nurture young athletes.

World women’s only marathon record holder Mary Keitany has urged race organisers to stage more cross country races to nurture young athletes.

Speaking during the launch of the inaugural Mumberes Farmers Cross country that will be held on 6th December in Baringo County, Keitany said such races will help to nurture young athletes.

“We have to embrace cross country races across the country because young people can’t run on tarmac roads. At the same time, we need to conserve our environment,” said the four-time New York City Marathon champion.

 Nashon Koech, the brainchild behind the race said that it is time for Africa to organize more races to help in nurturing talents and also to fill the gap of races since Diamond has cancelled some races which are dear to Africans.

With IAAF cutting off some races from Diamond Leagues, Koech said it is high time that the country promotes more races to prepare Kenyan runners for other championships across the world.

“It is time that Africa to have more races since the Diamond league has reduced some races which have been well performed with African athletes and that’s why our race has come to fill that gap to encourage athletes and promote talents in the area which covers five counties,” said Koech.

He added that the race will educate athletes and residents of Mumberes area and its environs on the importance of planting trees since the area covers different forests within.

“We want to tell people through sports that cutting tress affect environment and encourage them to conserve the environment by planting more tres,” added Koech.

The event will have four categories elite race of 10km for both men and women, 8km junior men and women and 2km fun race.

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