World 5,000 metres silver medallist Vivian Cheruiyot will skip the cross country circuit and instead compete in European indoor meetings.
Cheruiyot, who has competed in only one race abroad in the build-up to this season, finishing second to Linet Masai in Amorebieta, Spain, said she is currently keen to make inroads in the indoor meetings running in 3,000m.
However, she will be at Ngong Race Course on Saturday for the Kenya Police Cross Country Championship where the institution will be seeking to pick its best runners for the national trials.
“I’m not sure if I will be running in the trials on February 21. But I will be in Nairobi this weekend for the Police championship,” she said on Tuesday from her base in Eldoret.
The 25-year-old former world cross country junior women champion in 2000 in Vilamoura returned to the country but will be heading to England for the start of winter Indoor circuit next month.
Also keen to pursue the indoor meetings is Pamela Jelimo, the Olympic 800m champion, Augustine Choge, the Commonwealth Games 5,000m gold medallist and Isaac Kiprono Songok.
Cheruiyot faces Grace Momanyi, Masai and last year’s 8km winner Margaret Wangare at the Police meeting which comes a week after their perenial rivals Armed Forces staged their contest at the Kahawa Garrison where Linet Chepkurui returned from a long hamstring injury lay off to rule the roost.
In the men’s race, last year’s winner Moses Masai, the world 10,000m bronze medallist, has had a good run in European cross country meetings.
He faces last year’s police prodigy, Samuel Kitwara, world 3,000m steeplechase bronze medallist Richard Matelong and Paul Meli.
Kenyans swept the top four slots with Wilson Kiprop clinched his second consecutive win defeating compatriot Thomas Longosiwa in the EA Permit Cross Country race in Villa Lagarina near Rovereto, Italy, on a snowy and very cold day.
In the women’s race local favourite Federica Dal Ri took the honours holding off 2006 European Cross Country champion Tatyana Holovchenko from the Ukraine for the second consecutive time in 2009 after her her narrow third place in the Campaccio race in San Giorgio su Legnano.
A four-man group formed by Kiprop, Longosiwa, Titus Masai and Ezekiel Meli took the lead from the early stages of the race run over a very difficult up-and-down mountain course.
Experienced Italian Gabriele De Nard and Stefano Scaini followed in the chasing group.
Additional reporting from iaaf.org