The 2018 Abu Dhabi Marathon champion Marius Kipserem is focusing on a podium finish when he lines up at the 39th edition of the NN Rotterdam Marathon on Sunday.
He will be competing against his training mate and Buenos Aires Marathon champion Emmanuel Saina and Sydney Marathon champion Elijah Kemboi.
The athlete, who has been training in Kapsabet and the plains of Nandi Hills in Nandi County, said that he has done good training and will be looking forward to a good race.
“My training went on well and I’m prepared for stiff competition but I want to be among the first three athletes,” said Kipserem.
The athlete is also eyeing to reduce his personal best of 2:04:04, which he clocked in Abu Dhabi Marathon last year.
“If the weather will be favourable, I think I can lower my time as I look forward to participate in the major marathons in future,” said the athlete.
On his part, Kemboi said that he is well prepared for the race and he will be teaming up with his training mate as they eye the podium finish.
“My training has been good and we are going to run well in the race on Sunday. Having trained with Kipserem, we will run together up to the 35km mark and after that, it will be everybody for himself,” said Kemboi.
The two athletes will be competing against Kenyan-born Turkish athlete Kaan Kigen Ozbilen and Dutchman Abdi Nageeye, who are both training at Kaptagat, Elgeyo Marakwet County.
Kigen said that he believes the training he has done will bring him good results as he looks forward to be in the podium.
“Training with the best athletes in the world has given me morale to perform well when we line up for the race on Sunday," said Kigen.
The athlete started competing in marathon races in 2013, before changing his citizenship in 2015.
Kigen also boasts of running with Mo Farah in 2014 during the Great North Run, where they both finished the race at the same time clocking 59:59.
His training mate Abdi will also be seeking to lower his personal best as part of his preparation for the Olympics Games in Tokyo, Japan next year.
Abdi said that he enjoys training in Kenya because the conditions are favourable and one delivers good results after the whole process of training.
"I love training in Kenya and my preparations has been good so far. After the race, I will be coming back to Kaptagat to train for my next marathon and build up for the Olympics Games next year, where I will be representing my country-Netherlands," said Abdi.
The athlete also urged other sports lovers to visit Kenya and train because it has the best conditions which will improve their performance.
"I have trained here in Kaptagat and Eldoret and I want to admit that it has the best conditions for preparations for the race," he told the Nation Sport.