January 8, 2017

New entrants excelled in Embu as the eight Athletics Kenya Cross Country build-up series concluded albeit in a lower gear at Kangaru Boys High School on Saturday.


The final gathering, coming too close after the Christmas break, saw Road Racers Morris Munene and Sheila Chesang win the senior 10Kilometres apart as Josphat Mumo and Bancy Muthoni dominated the junior races.


Munene, the Bristol half marathon course record holder, easily triumphed against his opponents to take the senior men crown in 30:55.5 on the rocky course ahead of trailers Vincent Toroitich and Kennedy Cheserek of General Service Unit who finished second and third in 30:56.04 and 31:19.25.


Dennis Mugendi (31:25.08) from the host county, Timothy Katana (31:33.09) of General Service Unit and Josphat Ndambiri (31:40.09) from Embu topped the list of the first six in the senior men.


In what looked like a two-horse challenge between local athletes and the General Service Unit elite athletes, Sheila Chesang outfoxed home-girl Pauline Njeru to win the senior women 10kilometres race.


The GSU officer clocked 35:56.09 for victory while Njeru sighed in second in 36:39.01 as Helen Nzembi, also from GSU, sealed the podium in 37:25.09.


“The course was quite challenging. It was slippery with obstacles and dust. All the same, I am glad that I have won,” said the champion who is focusing on a marathon race in France next month.


At the beginning of the race, the last after Nairobi, Kilogoris, Nyahururu, Iten, Kapsokwony, Machakos, and Sotik, poor attendance almost derail the junior 6kilometres event where only 4 participants presented themselves for race.


Bancy Muthoni, Elizabeth Njeri (both from Kirinyaga) and Faith Wanjiru and Caroline Wambui, the last two from Embu, finished first, second, third and last in 24:48.04, 27:18.04, 34:43.09 and 34:44.0 respectively.


The junior men’s title was won by Joseph Mumo of Machakos in 24:49.02 with Michael Mutisya and Boniface Mulwa, also from Machakos, finishing second and third in 25:09.05 and 25:23.04.


The end of the build-up series paves the way for the grass root cross country competitions that will start with county championships this weekend that will culminate with the national selection on February 18th in Nairobi.


Selected Results


10Km Senior men


1. Morris Munene 30:55.5

 2. Vincent Toroitich 30:56.4

 3. Kennedy Cheserek 31:19.3

 4. Dennis Mugendi 31:25.8

 5. Timothy Katana 31:33.9

 6. Josphat Ndambiri 31:40.9


10Km Senior Women


1. Sheila Chesang 35:56.9

 2. Pauline Njeru 36:39.1

 3. Helen Nzembi 37:25.9

 4. Ruth Njoroge 39:24.4

 5. Getrude Chepchirchir 40:58.1

 6. Florence Njoroge 41:56.7


8Km Junior Men


1. Joseph Mumo 24:49.2

 2. Michael Mutisya 25:09.5

 3. Boniface Mulwa 25:23.4

 4. Nathan Mathenge 25:57.5

 5. Gerald Maina 26:07.9

 6. Jackson Maina 26:14.5


6Km Junior Women


1. Bancy Muthoni 24:48.4

 2. Elizabeth Njeri 27:18.4

 3. Faith Wanjiru 34:43.9

 4. Caroline Wambui 34:44.1


Athletics Kenya

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