The pre-trials for the national 10,000m men’s team for the London Olympic Games due for Tuesday next week at the Nyayo National Stadium will only feature 31 athletes with A Standard qualifying times Athletics Kenya has said.
Even though 46 athletes with A and B Standard qualifying times had been short-listed for the national camp that has been going on in Eldoret, those with A Standard times of 27:45.00 have received the green light to battle it out at the pre-trials.
Consequently, 15 athletes with B Standard times of 28:05.00 have been excluded from the pre-trials where 15 athletes will be picked for the final trials that will be held during Diamond League’s Prefontaine Classic on June 2 in Eugene, United States.
AK chairman Isaiah Kiplagat cautioned that the A Standard athletes, who will not participate in the pre-trials will not be considered for the final trials.
The athletics supremo was addressing the press at Riadha House upon presenting a donation of 770 pairs of running spikes worth Sh11.55m from sports equipment manufacturers, Nike to the Ministry of Education, director, quality assurance and standards, Enos Oyaya.
“For the purpose of quality and upon consultation with coaches in charge at the camp, the participation of B Standard athletes won’t bring any big difference since most are road runners,” Kiplagat said. “We want to pick the best for Eugene hence only one race will feature at the pre-trials so that no one will feel disadvantaged.”
Kiplagat said that they have turned down requests by some agents who wanted their athletes to fly direct to Oregon. “We have issued a directive that there are no special cases and if anyone misses the pre-trials then they should forget about Oregon or London,” Kiplagat said.
To spice up the pre-trials race that will get under way at 3pm, a number of sprints races and field events will be on the cards from 1.30pm. They include men and women 100m, 200m, 400m and 4x400m races.