The fastest man over the 1,500 metres last year, Silas Kiplagat, proved he has still got his kick as he outsprinted fellow serviceman John Mwangangi to claim the Kenya Prisons cross country championships’ 12-kilometre crown at Nairobi’s Uhuru Gardens on Saturday.
It was always going to be decided by a sprint dash as the two athletes matched each other strides throughout the race. In the end, Kiplagat proved yet again that he is still got his kick which helped him to clocking 3:29.27 in Monaco to get himself into the top ten fastest runners ever for the event.
On Saturday, Kiplagat clocked 34:46.2 to win the 12km senior men race ahead of Mwangangi who was second in 34:48.3 while Fredrick Musyoki was third in 35:05.8.
“I wanted to win for my team. I, however, will not be running in the national trials as I head to Europe for the Indoor circuit,” said Kiplagat, who last year tried his hand at cross country running and was seventeenth at the Kenyan National Cross Country Championships.
The women race was won by Pauline Wangui, though her performance was overshadowed by the return to action of veteran marathon runner Catherine Ndereba.
Wangui was able to shake off the pack with just half the distance remaining with both Alice Mogire and Tabitha Wambui.
Race remained open
Although they were able to shake off a group of marathon runners led by Ndereba, Boston marathon champion Salina Kosgei and Susan Chepkemei, the race remained open until the final kilometre when Wangui pulled away in her final attempt to drop her pursuant and arrived at the tape first in 27:04.1.
Mogire and Wambui exchanged positions as they came to the finish line with Mogire having the final say as she claimed second in 27:15.1 while Wambui was third in 28:11.2.
The vetera Chepkemei, who is returning from a two-year ban for use of banned substance, claimed the fourth slot in 28:21.4 as she held off a late charge from Sharon Kipsang 28:31.3 in fifth and Ruth Kutol 28:45.4 in sixth place.
Ndereba got the better of Kosgei to claim the seventh slot in 28:51.3 while Kosgei was eighth in 28:16.2 ahead of Sylvia Chesebe 28:17.4.
Results Women - Pauline Wambui 27:04.1, Alice Mogire 27:15.1, Tabitha Wambui 28:11.2, Susan Chepkemei 28:21.4, Sharon Kipsang 28:31.3, Ruth Kutol 28:45.4, Catherine Ndereba 28:51.3, Salina Kosgei 28:16.2, Sylvia Chesebe 28:17.4;
Men – Silas Kiplagat 34:46.2, John Mwangangi 34:48.3, Fredrick Musyoki 35:05.8, Bernard Rotich 35:14.2, Zablon Rotich 35:24.1, Joseph Birech 35:30.1, Timothy Kiptoo 35:35.2, Charles Cheruiyot 35:39.0, Elijah Chelimo 35:40.6, Solomon Barngetuny 35:48.7.