After being delayed by a week as the country mourns the late President Daniel Toroitich arap Moi, the National Cross Country Championships is here with us.
That the competition, which has been moved to the Ngong Racecourse, is crucial on the Athletics Kenya calendar can never be emphasised.
A huge number of athletes who have risen up the ranks to be world-beaters are products of cross country running.
A NOTCH HIGHER
And as AK selects a team to represent the country at the African Cross Country Championships in Lome, Togo, in April, it is important for the governing body to stage a successful event, picking the best of the best.
The competition witnessed at the regional level was impressive and we expect the athletes to take this a notch higher since so much is at stake.
Apart from seeking slots in Team Kenya to Lome, many athletes will be using the event as part of their training for the Olympic Games, set for July 24 to August 9 in Tokyo, Japan.
Of significance too is that, for the first time, we shall have competition for Under-18 athletes, both boys and girls.
As the chairman of the Youth Development Committee, I could never be happier. With the World Under-20 Championships coming to Kenya this year, the cross country for the junior runners will go a long way in developing their endurance.
We have ensured that probable middle distance and distance runners from the various World Under-20 camps are enlisted through the various regions to come to Nairobi and gauge themselves ahead of the national pre-trials set for April.
In addition, we expect some of the top runners to represent their various regions including National Police Service, Kenya Defence Forces, Kenya Prisons and the Rifts.
Korir is the chairman of Athletics Kenya’s Nairobi branch. [email protected]