Champ Katul upbeat about Sirikwa Classic

Thursday, February 2nd, 2023 02:30 | By
Sirikwa Classic Gold World Cross Country Tour officials led by technical coach David Letting (left) put markings on the race course at Lobo village yesterday. PD/Emmanuel Masinde

Reigning National Cross Country champion Charles Katul is eyeing another win at Sirikwa Classic Gold World Cross Country Tour tomorrow at Lobo Village in Eldoret.

Katul failed to make it to Team Kenya for the World Cross Country championships that will be held on February 18th in Bathurst, Australia, after finishing in ninth place last year in December.

When he missed the slot at Bathurst, Katul did not give up as he later won national cross country trials at Kenya Prisons Training College grounds noting that it was a learning curve for him.

He said that the win gave him the morale to work hard in his training so as to achieve excellence in his running career.

“Winning national trials gave me the morale to work hard in training and now I’m aware of the importance to stick to the training programme.

At first, I had a problem with speedwork  before the trials, I trained hard and that is why I got good results,” said Katul, who trains under coach Daniel Ngetich.

Medical bracket

In 2019, Katul managed to represent the country in World Athletics cross country in Denmark where he was placed 15th.

He is now determined to be in the medal bracket during Sirikwa Classic.

“Am confident that I will get good results during the race since I have learnt from my mistakes that without hard work you can not be position one. Intense training and working hard are very important as they have improved my ability on the course,” said Katul, who trains in Iten, Elgeyo Marakwet County.

However, Katul is optimistic that he will get a slot to represent the country in 10, 000m as he will continue to prepare for the Budapest qualification after competing in the cross-country trials.

Meanwhile, preparations for the 2023 Sirikwa Classic Gold World Cross Country Tour formerly Agnes Tirop Memorial have entered the homestretch yesterday.

The race has attracted both local and international athletes ready to battle for top honours. 

Over 30 countries have already confirmed participation in the invite-only race featuring 50 athletes in each category.

Speaking to the press on Wednesday in Eldoret, Race Chief Executive Officer Barnabas Korir said that they have received confirmation from international athletes from various countries as technicians continue to fine-tune the race course.

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