By ERICK OCHIENG’
Barnabas Sigei in his way to winning the men’s 12km race during Administration Police cross country championships at Nairobi’s Uhuru Gardens, yesterday. [PHOTO: DENIS OKEYO/STANDARD]
Shanghai Marathon silver medalist Barnabas Sigei and Chemweno Langa’t are the winners of the seventh edition of the Administration Police (AP) National Cross-country Championship.
Sigei, a pace setter at the Rotterdam Marathon last year, breezed to the tape in 36:01.2 to floor other interprovincial units in the men’s 12km race run in Nairobi’s Uhuru Gardens, yesterday.
Langa’t, who comes from the Rift Valley like Sigei, won the women’s 8km race in 28:04.5.
Basking in glory, soft spoken Sigei told FeverPitch, “Apart from the conducive weather, I was in great shape, I did not sleep on my laurels during the festive season. I was busy on the road practising.”
Sigei, who often participates in marathon races, as a pace setter, said he is eager to drop this season as part of his New Year resolution.
Last year, he proved himself as a master of road races abroad, winning almost three quarters of the over 15 races he participated in internationally. The urge to seek glory locally prompted Sigei to sign for the cross country which he said has never been his forte.
test my fitness
“I resolved to take part in this race today with no intention to win but to test my fitness and endurance, the result just startled me. I was not expecting to be a champion,” Sigei noted.
Following the victory Sigei hinted that he will be stepping up his training at Kericho’s Cherbibele Athletics Camp ahead of Athletics Kenya National Cross country meeting in March.
“I will also be preparing for the Vienna Marathon and my prayer is for me to win,” he said
As Lang’at won in the women’s category Susan Cherotich, the reigning Columbus 25km Road Race champion was heartbroken.
Cherotich had led the competition from start upto 200 yards away from the tape when her knees gave in. Lang’at, took advantage of Cherotich’s predicament to taste her first ever victory in cross country.
After her disappointment the Kapsabet-based Cherotich said: “My finishing last kick was poor, today’s failure proved to me that I have a long way to go. I have so many dreams to realise in 2014 including making it in the Kenya’s 5000m squad for the Commonwealth Games in Glascow, Scotland.”
Lang’at said noted that her ability to keep pace with speedy Cherotich was due to the AK National Cross country Series she had been taking part in since last year.
The national squad of 20 (ten men and ten women) selected yesterday will represent AP in the Kenya Police Service National Championships next weekend at the Ngong Race Course. –