Bathurst, Australia, February 16, 2023–Our athletes who arrived here on Tuesday night have settled down in readiness for action on Saturday at the Mount Panorama Motorspeedway, the venue of the 44th edition of the World Cross Country Championships determined to correct mistakes of Aarhus, Denmark three years ago by sweeping the medals tables.
The team’s morale has further been boosted by the arrival of the five times world cross country champion Paul Tergat who urged them on as an insider having been on the cross country course for close to a decade (1992-2000) as an athlete.
Tergat is here as the World Athletics Goodwill Ambassador, the ultimate recognition of his good work of promoting the profile and image of cross country running. The speedway circuit won’t be part of the course. Instead, competitors will run five laps of 2km located up the hill behind the pit lanes.”This is the beauty of cross country. You have to be prepared for anything,” said Tergat, the 10,000 metres silver medallist in the 2000 Sydney Olympics.
Geoffrey Kamworor , Diamond League champion Nicholas Kipkorir and Kibiwott Kandie are expected to lead the senior men’s assault determined to regain the individual men’s title Kenya last in 2019 to Joshua Cheptigei in Aahus after the Ugandan led compatriot Jacob Kiplimo to the first 1-2 for Uganda in the championships’ 50 years history. SOlympics champion Selemon Barega is also well prepared for the senior men’s race.
Ethiopian Letesenbet Gidey who holds the 5,000/10,000m and half marathon world records will battle it out Kenyans Beatrice Chebet , veteran Emily Chebet and Burundi’s Francine Niyonsaba
Coach Julius Kirwa has briefed the athletes to avoid being overawed by the opposition, saying they have had good training at the residential training camp at the St Mark’s Teachers College, Kigari, Embu, and the last few days of training here are meant for washing away the jet lag.
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