Elgeyo Marakwet boy times race to perfection to clinch the title
Robert Kipkemboi and Jelagat Seurey emerged winners of the 14th Standard Charted Nairobi international marathon yesterday.
Kipkemboi , trains in Elgeyo Marakwet and is coached by Eric Kimaiyo, timed the race to perfection to win the men’s category in 2:13:27 to bag the Sh1.5m as Seurey posted 2:34:18 to clinch the winners’ prize.
Kipkemboi was in the second group of athletes as the first group led the early leaders with Samson Keiyo, Matthew Koech and Los Angeles marathon champion Weldon Kirui upfront.
Keiyo tried to attack at the 15 kilo- meter mark but Kirui and Vincent Kiptoo reeled them in and were joined by Emmanuel Naibei as they approached the 21 kilometre mark in warm conditions. This made things interesting for the athletes.
Kipkemboi then surged to the lead group at the 25 kilometre mark with Mark Lokwanamoi and Hillary Kiplimo joining the top pack. Early pacesetters Keiyo, Koech and Kurgat began to tire and were fading by the 30 kilometremark.
Kiplimo stepped up the temp with ten kilometers remaining but failed to shake off Kipkemboi and Lokwanamoi who were now shoulder to shoulder. Soon the three could not be separated and with four kilometres remaining Kipkemboi surged to the front to open a 30 metre gap. This was a lead he would not relinquish as he strode home to victory.
Lokwanamoi came home second in 2:14:08 with Hillary Kiplimo finishing third in 2:14:25 and Vincent Tanui home fourth in 2:14:37. Emmanuel Naibei finished fifth in 2:14:40
As can be expected Kipkemboi was delighted with the victory.
“It was a tough race. For the first stint I stayed in the second group of runners. After the halfway point I decided to up the tempo. I tried to be in the lead and from there I was able to maintain the tempo. I increased the pace in the final four kilometre” added Kipkemboi.
Kipkemboi said the win will boost him as he aims for the Singapore marathon next month.
“This win will motivate me as I ran in Singapore next month.”
Robert Kipkemboi wins the 42Km mens Standard Chartered Nairobi Marathon at Nyayo Stadium Stadium in Nairobi on October 30, 2016./