As expected, Vincent Keter from Rongai and Lang’ata’s Diana Chepkemoi dominated to win their respective races at Wednesday’s Athletics Kenya (AK) Nairobi Region World Under-20 Championships trials at the Nyayo National Stadium.
Athletes from Lang’ata and Rongai Athletics Club ruled the roost as Nairobi Region selected their team for the national trials for the world junior event planned for July 1-2 at the Nyayo National Stadium.
Keter clocked 3 minutes and 54.2 to win the men’s 1,500m race, beating Victor Mutai of Kasarani in 3:54.5 as Lang’ata’s Tenai Kipruto settled third in 3:56.3.
“This was just a warm up for my race on Sunday in Sweden where I will be trying to attain Tokyo Olympics qualifying standard,” said Keter.
The Olympic qualifying time is 3:30.00. “It’s my desire to represent Kenya both at the Tokyo Olympics and World Under-20 Championships.”
Chepkemoi timed 4:34.1 to reign in the women’s 1,500m, seeing off compatriots Mariam Chemutai and Daisy Chepkemoi to second and third places in 4:34.3 and 4:41.5 respectively.
“I am fully focused on getting that ticket to the World junior event. I will try polishing on my cruise at the bends before the trials,” said Chepkemoi, a class seven pupil at Kayliet Primary School in Kericho County.
Another Lang’ata athlete Fancy Chepkorir won women’s 5,000m in 17:03.0, as Rongai’s Jonathan Koech from Rongai claimed victory in equivalent men’s race in 14:01.6.
“It has always been my dream to wear the national colours like my mentor Beatrice Chebet. I am working hard towards that,” said Chepkorir, a class seven pupil at Katet Primary School in Kericho County.
Chebet is the reigning World Under-20 5,000m and World Under-20 Cross Country champion.
Chepkorir beat Anne Wanjira from Embakasi and Lang’ata’s Sheila Cherop to second and third places in 17:51.5 and 18:58.7.
Koech was too good for Dennis Kipkirui, who romped home second in 14:03.7 and compatriot Victor Chepkwony coming in third in 14.16.0.
Koech sealed a double with another victory in the 3,000m, timing 8:06.0 beating Kirui again to second place in 8:10.5.
Sharon Chepkemoi went home with the women’s 3,000m title in 10:22. after outsmarting Jolestin Biwott and Florence Chepkoech in 12:13.2 and 11:46.4 respectively.
Gedion Lameriam from Lang’ata won the men’s 800m with the fastest time of 1:53.3 from the first heat as Franklin Cheruiyot finished second with the second fastest time of 1:53.6.
Edward Manang’oi from Rongai won the 800m second heat with the third fastest time of 1:54.3. Dorcas Chepkemoi from Lang’ata won the women’s two-lap race in 2:15.0.
Joy Akinyi won women’s 100m and 200m in 12.6 and 26.7 respectively. Lucy Njeri was victorious in the women’s 400m race in 59.6 with Merin Sankale prevailing in men’s race in 48.5.