Women’s world marathon record holder Brigid Kosgei is set to clash with her compatriot Pauline Kaveke at the year-ending Corrida Internacional de São Silvestre 15-kilometre road race on Tuesday in Sao Paulo, Brazil.
Shanghai 10km Road Race champion Sheila Chelangat will also line up for the top prize.
Kosgei ran a brilliant race in Chicago in October to break the world record previously held by Paula Radcliffe (two hours, 15 minutes and 25 seconds), setting a new mark of 2:14:04.
She is optimistic that she will run well in the Brazilian city after good preparations and end the year on a high.
Kosgei, who has been training in Kapsait, Elgeyo Marakwet County, told Nation Sport that the new season is just starting and she will be running to see how her body reacts after a long break.
“I had taken a long break after my exploits in the Chicago Marathon in October and I recently started my training. I will be using the race to gauge how my body reacts before I get into full training ahead of the next assignment,” said Kosgei.
She put it mildly that her last season was “good” and that she will be expecting a better one next year as she targets to represent Kenya at the Olympic Games marathon race on August 8 in Sapporo, Japan.
“I will be getting back into training as I focus on the next season where I will participate in one major race which I’m yet to be told by the management. After that, I will be looking forward to be named alongside the team that will represent Kenya in the Olympics Games where I want to also bag the gold medal,” said the mother of two who is managed by Italian Federico Rosa.
Kosgei started the season with a win at the London Marathon in 2:18:20 (pictured, right), finishing ahead of her compatriot Vivian Cheruiyot (2:20:14) and Ethiopia’s Roza Dereje (2:20:51).
She later ran her personal best time in the half marathon at the Great North Run in England where she recorded a course record 1:04:28 ahead of her compatriot Magdalyne Masai (1:07:36) with Linet Masai settling for third in 1:07:44.
In October, Kosgei improved the world marathon record time to 2:14:04 and became the first woman to run under 2:15, improving her personal best by four minutes at the Chicago Marathon where she was also the defending champion.
She was later nominated for the World Athlete of the Year Awards where she was beaten by Dalilah Muhammad, the US 400m hurdles world champion and record holder.
Kosgei’s coach Erick Kimaiyo said she is in for a better season next year.
“She has written history and we expect her to do better in the next season since she is a good athlete who has always followed instructions in training,” said Kimaiyo, himself a former marathon star.
Chelangat, meanwhile, said that she has done good training and she is honoured to compete with the world record holder in Tuesday’s race.