Youngster Yvonne Chepchirchir ran a dogged race to win the 5km under-18 race as the Sirikwa Classic Cross Country Tour kicked off at the Lobo village in Eldoret on Saturday.
Chepchirchir timed 0:19:06, ahead of Faith Chepchumba (0:19:11) and Miriam Chemutai (0:19:38) in second and third respectively.
Having finished fourth at last month’s National Cross Country Championships in Ruiru, Chepchirchir revealed that she had to go back to the drawing board and put an extra shift in training ahead of the World Cross Country Tour Gold.
“It was very competitive and tough because every one was strong in their own right. I finished fourth in Ruiru and one of the things I identified as my weak spot was my speed and final kick. Therefore, I have been working on the same for the last two weeks and I am glad that it repaid,” she said.
The Sirikwa Classic is the second edition of the World Cross Country Tour following last year’s Agnes Tirop Memorial Cross Country Tour, which was staged at the same venue.
The day began with an exhibition 1km race for boys and girls as part of Athletics Kenya (AK) mission of nurturing athletics talent from an early age.
In the boys’ race, Biden Tella took first place as Bravin Kiplagat and Nimrod Kipkoech claimed second and third respectively.
The girls’ race was won by Elsy Chepchirchir with Millicent Jemutai and Angela Jebet coming second and third.